July 16, 2011
Delegates Schedule Public Hearings on Marcellus Drilling
The House members of the legislature's Select Committee on Marcellus Shale have announced they will hold three public hearings on drilling issues to get input on how problems and concerns related to natural gas drilling should be addressed.
In media reports, Delegate Tim Manchin, House chairman of the committee said, “The committee members have heard much about both the potential benefits and problems associated with the Marcellus Shale development - what we are now looking for are suggestions on measures that should be included in a new state law that encourages efficient development of the resource while addresses local and environmental concerns."
The hearings are set for Wheeling on July 21, Morgantown on July 25, and Clarksburg on July 27. The times and locations will be announced early next week. We'll send out more details once they become available. They will also be posted on the Legislature's website, www.legis.state.wv.us.
The entire Select Committee met earlier this week, and heard presentations from a variety of experts and interest groups including WV-SORO. The full committee plans to reconvene and hold three working meetings during the August interim meetings of the legislature (August 1-3).
Also this week, Senator President Earl Ray Tomblin, acting as Governor, signed an executive order directing the Department of Environmental Protection to develop rules to regulate Marcellus Shale gas drilling. The plan is a positive first step, but is no substitute for legislative action which is needed to address the problems surface face in their dealings with the drillers.
You can read Tomblin's press release and the executive order here. We have posted links to a number of news stories related to the Select Committee meetings and Tomblin's announcement at www.wvsoro.org.