HARRISBURG – Gov. Tom Corbett today announced that since 2012, Act 13 will generate more than $630 million through 2014 through an impact fee assessed on unconventional natural gas wells. The majority of Act 13 funds are directly invested in local communities.
“We are building a stronger Pennsylvania by harnessing our abundant resources to create jobs for working families, reinvest in our local communities, and protect our environment for generations to come,” Corbett said. “Through Act 13, we are protecting public health and safety, safeguarding our environment, and making sure our world-class energy industry grows in a responsible way.”
Data released by the Public Utility Commission today show the state expects to collect $224.5 million in 2014 through Act 13’s impact fee assessed on unconventional wells. Coupled with the $406 million collected in 2012 and 2013, Act 13 will generate more than $630 million since it was signed into law.
The majority of Act 13 funds are directly distributed to counties and municipalities all across the Commonwealth for a variety of environmental, public safety, infrastructure, emergency response and other authorized uses.
Act 13 funds are also directed to commonwealth agencies including DEP, PEMA, PUC, the Office of the State Fire Commissioner, and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission to strengthen their oversight of drilling activities. County conservation districts also receive significant new funding under Act 13.
Additionally, the impact fee helps fund other critical conservation programs such as Growing Greener and the Marcellus Legacy Fund. Growing Greener, established in 1999, is receiving its first infusion of new funding from the impact fee in over a decade. The Marcellus Legacy Fund is a newly created program administered by the Commonwealth Financing Authority that provides funding for a variety of uses, including watershed restoration, abandoned mine reclamation, open space, greenway, trail and recreation projects, flood control and other environmental purposes. Funds are also allocated for water and sewer infrastructure projects through both PENNVEST and the H2O program.
Act 13 of 2012 was the single largest step in modernizing the state’s Oil and Gas Law in nearly three decades. It increased protections for public and private water supplies, empowered the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) through the adoption of over twenty specific enhancements to Pennsylvania’s environmental protection laws, including one of the most progressive hydraulic fracturing fluid disclosure laws in the nation.
For more information, visit www.puc.state.pa.us. Click Natural Gas.