PA Gov Corbett Signs Back-Door Forced Pooling Bill into Law

lipstick on a pigIt’s sad for us to have to report this, but PA Gov. Tom Corbett has signed a bill into law that’s bad for PA’s landowners. MDN told you about Senate Bill SB259 last week (see New PA Royalty Bill SB259 Faces Opposition from NARO). While the bill has some very good things for landowners in it (more transparency with items deducted from royalty checks), there’s one last minute addition that’s a big problem: There’s language that allows landowners with older leases to be pooled with others, putting them at a disadvantage–they can’t renegotiate their lease for a better deal.

It’s a bad deal for landowners. No matter how much lipstick you put on this pig (see Corbett’s statement below), it’s still a pig…
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DRBC Feeling the Pressure from PA Over Fracking Rules

According to the Delaware River Basin Commission’s chairperson, Michele Siekerka (from NJ), the DRBC has been a busy little beaver putting “thousands of hours” of work into doing “more work” on proposed new rules to allow fracking in several Pennsylvania counties, including Wayne and Pike. Too bad they don’t have anything to show for it.

As you may recall, PA Gov. Tom Corbett recently sent the DRBC a zinger letter telling the DRBC to defecate or get off the pot (see PA Gov. Lights into DRBC Over Failure to Act on Drilling Rules). On top of that, a landowner group in PA is threatening the DRBC with a lawsuit for “takings” if they don’t move forward–now (see Energy in Depth’s The DRBC Dance Around the Stonewall). Looks like all the pressure is having some effect. At least the DRBC is squirming and issuing banal statements about how hard they’re working…
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Congressman Proposes Bill to Fastrack Pipeline Approval

Infrastructure–pipelines and processing plants–are currently the issue holding up more production in the Marcellus and Utica Shale. And the northeast is not alone. Pipelines in particular, big interstate pipelines, can sometimes take many years to plan and build. One reason they take so long is that government agencies *cough* Fish and Wildlife Commission, the Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Land Management *cough* don’t incur any consequences if they violate the 90-day turnaround time they’re supposed to observe when it comes to investigating and signing off on new interstate pipelines.

Congressman Mike Pompeo, R-Kan, has introduced a bill in Congress that will fix that little problem. You take your time and miss the deadline? Automatic approval for the pipeline in 90 days. Bam!…
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Oil & Gas Awards – Enter Now

Marcellus Drilling News is pleased to partner with the Oil & Gas Awards to promote their annual, regional events. Specifically, we’re promoting the 2013 Northeast Oil & Gas Awards (entries due by Nov. 29, 2013). However, there are a number of MDN readers from outside the Marcellus/Utica Shale region, so we’re also putting a shout-out to drillers and others in the industry about the Oil & Gas Awards for the Midcontinent, Southwest and West Coast (entries due Aug. 9, 2013).

The full, official announcement below…
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