Another PA Taxpayer Giveaway

Imagine if you didn’t have to buy anywhere near the level of car insurance needed to protect yourself and others. Then, following a wreck, taxpayers paid for the repairs.

In a sense, that’s what was just recently passed by Pennsylvania lawmakers, for their buddies in the oil and gas industry, at the cost of taxpayers. Reporter Laura Legere detailed it all in her story: “As Pa. faces ‘looming crisis’ of new abandoned wells, state law will freeze well bonding rates for a decade

“The bill, which was passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature, freezes bond amounts for conventional oil and gas wells at $2,500 per well, or less than 10% of expected cleanup costs if companies walk away without plugging them. Previously, state law allowed the environmental rule-making board to adjust bonding levels every two years.”

by Laura Legere / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / July 19, 2022
Just how bad is it in Pennsylvania?

“Pennsylvania oil and gas regulators have called the threat of new well abandonments a “looming crisis” that could cost taxpayers billions of dollars. That is on top of the estimated $6.6 billion it will cost to plug roughly 200,000 wells that were left unsealed by past operators over a century of drilling.”

by Laura Legere / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / July 19, 2022
What’s the correct level of bonding?

“The average plugging cost for an abandoned conventional well in Pennsylvania is $68,000… The bill was designed to neuter a petition to the state’s environmental rule-making board by environmental groups to impose full-cost bonds of $38,000 per well on conventional wells drilled since 1985.”

by Laura Legere / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / July 19, 2022
In the meantime, Pennsylvania taxpayers are also getting shortchanged on the sale of Pennsylvania gas without a severance tax, even with so much of that gas being exported. Read more about it here: Pennsylvania’s Impact Fee is ‘Chump Change’
Pennsylvania has been called “The Land of Taxes” for many decades, but apparently it doesn’t apply to Marcellus Shale exploration and production companies. At least not while they have such good friends in Harrisburg!

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