Peters Twp Gives the Middle Finger to Drillers One Final Time

peters-twp-washington-county-paPeters Township, the most populous township in Washington County, PA, is one of the seven selfish towns that sued the state over the zoning provisions in the Act 13 law, eventually winning at the PA Supreme Court level (see PA Supreme Court Rules Against State/Drillers in Act 13 Case). The Act 13 victory gives townships the right to pass local zoning ordinances that restrict–but don’t ban–Marcellus/Utica drilling. Peters has been adept at using the victory to keep drilling banned by “studying” the issue to death (see Peters Twp, PA Pretends to Debate Ordinance to Allow Drilling). That pattern of behavior continued into last year (see Peters Twp, PA Continues to Delay Drilling by “Studying” It). Sooner or later you have to come down on one side or the other, and Monday night Peters decided–to screw Marcellus drillers. Town council passed a new drilling ordinance (4-2) that says drilling is ONLY allowed in areas zoned for industrial uses, which rules out areas zoned for agricultural uses (where most drilling happens). Even the drilling in industrial areas, a grand total of 138 acres in the township, will have to be a “conditional use” with loads of permits and reviews. In other words, Peters just flipped off the drilling industry, telling them “don’t ever bother drilling here”…

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