PA Auditor General Commits to Half-an-Audit of Shale Impact Fee $

Coming soon to a Pennsylvania township near you: the jackbooted thugs from the office of the PA Auditor General, Eugene DePasquale. You may recall that since he assumed office, DePasquale has had a chip on his shoulder when it comes to the Marcellus Shale (see Newly Elected PA Auditor General Targets DEP First Day on Job). He put together a sham report on the DEP, calling attention to “problems” fixed years earlier, before he assumed office (see DEP to DePasquale: Problems Fixed Years Ago, Where Have You Been?). He couldn’t discredit the Marcellus industry via the DEP, so recently he started on a new track–the millions of dollars raised in a severance tax-like fee called the impact fee (see PA Auditor General to Investigate “Lost” $30M Marcellus Impact Fee). On Thursday DePasquale announced he will conduct a thorough anal exam, er, a, audit of all Act 13 impact fee money distributed to towns and municipalities. Just to be sure they aren’t blowing it on trips and new cars, but actually spending it as intended under the law. Ah, Mr. Auditor General sir? Some 60% of the impact fee revenue raised goes to local towns and municipalities where drilling occurs. The other 40% goes into the black hole of politicians’ sticky fingers in Harrisburg. Are you also going to audit the 40% that stays in Harrisburg and gets redistributed as political favors? If he doesn’t also audit the 40%, we’d call his audit “half-an-audit”…

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