Citizens Committee in Mt. Pleasant, PA Draft Drilling Ordinances for Their Community

A citizens committee in Mt. Pleasant Township, PA (Washington County) has developed a draft zoning ordinance that will dictate what drillers in their township can, and cannot, do. From a news article:

The citizens advisory committee presented a final draft on its proposal for a zoning amendment governing oil and gas activities.

The committee, headed by Dencil Backus, is made up of about a dozen residents who have studied other zoning ordinances to find suitable regulations that would address the activity in Mt. Pleasant. They have looked at ways to address noise, light, odors and buffers in addition to where certain activity can take place.

In studying the matter, the committee has taken the approach that gas drilling into the Marcellus Shale should take place but not at the expense of the landowners, township or residents’ quality of life.

The rough draft still has to be reviewed by the supervisors and solicitor. From there, [Township Supervisor Larry] Grimm said, it will be passed on to the township and Washington County’s planning commissions for their approval.*

*Pittsburgh Observer-Reporter (Mar 24) – Meeting recap

Mesa Energy Adds Another New York Heavyweight Politico to Advisory Board

Mesa Energy, with drilling operations in Western NY, continues to add major firepower from New York’s political class to their advisory board. Previously it was former New York Gov. George Pataki (see this post). Today, Mesa has added former NY State Senator Nicholas Spano to the board. Mr. Spano knows the people, and the system in Albany, and he will no doubt help Mesa navigate the rough regulatory seas once horizontal drilling is approved in New York.

From the press release on Mesa’s website:

Dallas, TX – Mesa Energy Holdings, Inc. (the “Company”) (OTCBB: MSEH.OB), an exploration stage oil and gas exploration and production company with a focus on the Marcellus Shale in western New York, announced today that Nicholas A. Spano, former New York Senator, has been named to the Company’s Advisory Board. Senator Spano brings to the Company over 27 yeas of experience as a New York political leader and advocate for New York related matters.

“We welcome Senator Spano to our Advisory Board," said CEO of Mesa Energy Holdings, Inc., Randy M. Griffin. "With his strong background as a former New York State Senator and Assemblyman, he is a recognized authority in political issues. His support and guidance will be invaluable."

"I look forward to providing Randy with support and strategic guidance as he commences drilling activities in western New York," said Nicholas A. Spano. "With the Marcellus Shale in our backyard, there are great opportunities for the State to benefit from the Company’s activities. The Company intends to develop and produce natural gas in western New York which can potentially provide the local region with new jobs, tax dollars and a supply of natural gas."

As New York State Assemblyman (between 1979 and 1986), Mr. Spano served as chief executive of the Office of General Services (OGS), a large State agency that provides a broad range of support services that facilitate the operations of State government and that assist local governments, public authorities, public and private agencies. He ensured OGS provided government and nonprofit agencies with innovative solutions, integrated service, and best value, enabling the State of New York to function optimally.

In 1986, Mr. Spano was elected to New York State Senate as Senior Assistant Majority Leader. He also held various positions including Chairman of the Senate’s powerful Committee on Investigations and Government Operations; and Chairman of the Committees on Labor, Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities. Senator Spano represented District 35 in the New York State Senate until 2006.

Since retiring from the New York State Senate in 2006, Senator Spano has maintained his vast network of relationships with New York political and business leaders. Today he serves as president of Empire Strategic Planning, an experienced lobbying and government relations firm specializing in state and local advocacy in New York. He is also an Executive Director of Rand Commercial Services, a full service real estate financial institution with expertise in commercial and investment real estate.

Senator Spano is a member of the Richmond Children’s Center, Westchester Mental Health Association and Enrico Fermi Educational Foundation. He received a B.A. in Political Science at Iona College in New Rochelle, New York.

Mesa Energy (Mar 26) – Mesa Energy Holdings, Inc. Names Nicholas A. Spano, Former New York Senator, to the Advisory Board