$204 Million in Fracking Fees to Flow to PA Counties and Municipalities
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Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett announced that counties and local municipalities would receive $204 million from impact fees generated by shale drilling as a result of the passage of Act 13 last February. According to the release, $25.5 million will be directed to state agencies with safety and regulatory oversight authority over the natural gas industry, $104 million be disbursed directly to localities, and $72 million will be set aside for competitive grants for infrastructure and recreational improvement projects.
The release from the Governor's office also outlined the authorized uses of funds that will be disbursed directly to cities, counties, and townships for various expenses related to impacts from natural gas development, including:
- Construction, repair and maintenance of roads, bridges and other public infrastructure;
- Water, storm water and sewer system construction and repair;
- Emergency response preparedness, training, equipment, responder recruitment;
- Preservation and reclamation of surface and subsurface water supplies;
- Records management, geographic information systems and information technology;
- Projects which increase the availability of affordable housing to low-income residents;
- Delivery of social services, including domestic relations, drug and alcohol treatment, job training and counseling;
- Offsetting increased judicial system costs, including training;
- Assistance to county conservation districts for inspection, oversight and enforcement of natural gas development; and
- County or municipal planning.
According to news accounts, the State Public Utility Commission estimates that local officials can expect to see checks within the next 10 days.