Monday, February 6, 2012

Conference Committee Sends Marcellus Bill To Full Senate, House

By a partisan vote of 4 to 2, the Conference Committee on House Bill 1950 (Ellis-R-Butler) amended the bill with a uniform, statewide county-adopted drilling impact fee and a set of more than a dozen additional environmental protection measures agreed to by Senate and House Republicans and the Governor's Office and sent the bill to the full Senate and House for a vote.
            The members of the Conference Committee included Senators Joseph Scarnati (R-Jefferson), Mary Jo White (R-Venango) and John Yudichak (D-Luzerne) and Representatives Brian Ellis (R-Butler), David Reed (R-Indiana) and Michael Hanna (D-Clinton).
            Click Here for a staff summary of the House Bill 1950 Conference Committee Report.
            If all the Marcellus counties adopted the drilling fee, the fee would raise about $190 million in 2011 and $219 million in 2012 and increase to about $333 million in 2015, according to an estimate prepared by the Senate Republican Appropriations Committee staff.  (source summary)
            About $62 million the first year would go to statewide environmental initiatives like the Environmental Stewardship (Growing Greener) Fund, the Commonwealth Financing Agency for environmental projects and to DCED for natural gas development projects.

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