PA PUC Appeals Act 13 Case to Supreme Court One More Time

It seems there’s still a bit of unfinished business with the ongoing, never-ending lawsuits around the Act 13 oil and gas drilling law in Pennsylvania. At least one final bit of unfinished business. You will recall that seven selfish towns sued the state over the Act 13 law and it’s provision that would substitute a statewide, uniform and fair set of zoning ordinances for drilling in place of a patchwork, crazy quilt system of local ordinances for oil and gas drilling. These seven selfish towns wanted their own ordinances and sued, ultimately winning at the Supreme Court (see PA Supreme Court Rules Against State/Drillers in Act 13 Case). The PA Supremes couldn’t, however, be bothered with deciding every tiny bit of nuance and sent some items back to the lower Commonwealth Court for final decisions. One of those decisions was about whether or not the PA Public Utility Commission (PUC) has the right to review any local oil and gas ordinances for compliance with state standards, making the award of impact fee money to a town based on such compliance. The Commonwealth Court gutted that right, taking it away from the PUC in a July decision (see PA Court Says 7 Towns Can Keep Marcellus Money & Ban Drilling Too). The PUC has appealed that decision back up to the Supremes…

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