FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
State Rep. Frank Dermody
Dermody responds to Scarnati impact fee proposal
HARRISBURG, April 28 – House Democratic Leader Frank Dermody made these comments after an initial review of a summary of the Marcellus shale impact fee proposal released today by Senate President Pro Tempore Joseph Scarnati:
“This weak alternative is certainly not enough to protect the environment and ensure clean drinking water. It’s not nearly enough to give DEP the resources that are needed to protect our state’s people, land and water.
“The huge corporations that will make billions of dollars by taking gas out of Pennsylvania must pay their fair share. This small impact fee will not achieve that. Right now, those corporations pay nothing. With this impact fee, they would pay only a small fraction of what they should.
“It’s just short of the free pass those corporations have gotten until now, while middle-class families have been struggling and paying more than their fair share. This tiny impact fee will not be enough to help schools that are laying off the people who teach our kids, or to help the senior citizens who can’t pay their property taxes.
“The Scarnati proposal envisions a major expansion of the bureaucracy at the Public Utility Commission. At what cost? And why? Oil and gas-producing corporations are not public utilities; they should not have the power of eminent domain. They are major industrial producers of natural gas, and they are taxed in every other state with the money going to the General Fund.
“We must do better than this proposal. We need to make the corporations that are profiting from Pennsylvania pay their fair share.”