Guest Post: Act 13 Provides Conservation District with Funding

[vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Ray Warriner is the Chairman/Farm Director of the Susquehanna County Conservation District and is a fourth generation farmer at Agawam Farms at Elk Lake. Below is a letter written to legislators in northeastern Pennsylvania regarding the funding received from the Act 13 Impact Fees established on the oil and gas industry.
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[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_custom_heading text=”June 26, 2015″ font_container=”tag:h4|font_size:28px|text_align:left|line_height:30px” google_fonts=”font_family:PT%20Sans%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]
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Pennsylvania is the only oil and gas producing state that imposes a carefully crafted impact fee on the development of these resources. It’s generated over $850 million since 2012. The Susquehanna County Conservation District has been a beneficiary of that legislation.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]We’re concerned this highly workable impact fee program will gradually disappear if it is blended into a severance tax program with wholly different objectives. Simply put, the Impact Fee works and shouldn’t be “fixed.”  The impact fees being collected needs to stay in the impacted areas.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Susquehanna County, of course, has been one the most prolific Marcellus Shale gas producers and has benefited enormously by the industry. Moreover, thanks to the Act 13 Impact Fee, those benefits include a very intensive commitment to environmental protection and enhancement.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_single_image image=”7996″ border_color=”” img_link_large=”” link=”” img_link_target=”” img_size=””][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″] SCCD Summer Intern, Tim Stonier, holding a Global Positioning unit for the Dubois Creek Assessment Link:
[/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Our District conducts watershed assessment and improvements projects. We also operate numerous programs revolving around erosion and sedimentation pollution control, waterway and wetland protection, Chesapeake Bay protection, dirt and gravel roads pollution prevention and numerous others. The natural gas development has done so much to assist with our programs with ACT 13 monies and is a huge net positive for our area.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]If Act 13 funds were not available to the Susquehanna County Conservation District it certainly would have a negative effect on our staff hours adversely impacting our programs.  All of our programs focus on trying to ‘keep clean water clean and treat dirty water’. Trying to accomplish this task with less staff is not likely.  We will be no longer able to effectively accomplish our mission of protecting our counties natural resources.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Many of your fellow legislators are probably not aware of just how important Act 13 funds are to impacted counties, not only to a rural county such as ours, but also to their own urban interests such as protecting the Chesapeake Bay. They need to know.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Please ensure the Act 13 Impact Fee is not “fixed.” We like it just the way it is and so do the residents of our county.
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[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Sincerely,
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Ray Warriner,
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row animation=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Chairman[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Kelsey Mulac

Kelsey was raised in Indiana, Pennsylvania and attended The Pennsylvania State University where she earned a degree in Communications. Kelsey works as the External Affairs Coordinator at Cabot where she manages external communications, including social media and community outreach projects. Prior to starting her full-time position, Kelsey worked as a summer intern for Cabot while attending Penn State.

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