If you ever (logically) thought a piece of legislation that’s meant to be a budget would only deal with money issues, you would be wrong. Budget laws for decades have been used to slip in all sorts of non-money-related measures. This year’s Ohio budget is no different. Tucked away in the proposed budget law from Gov. John Kasich are a number of non-budget items that directly affect Utica Shale drilling in Ohio. The measures include a ban on using brine as a de-icer on public roads, moving from yearly to quarterly production reports, lease transfer 30-day notifications, a $25,000 impact fee on each well drilled (surprise!), and testing of shale cuttings for radioactivity. And you thought budgets were just boring numbers.
Here’s the low-down on the non-budget items in the budget bill that will impact Utica drilling in a big way: