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PA House Bill Would Require DCNR Leases of State Forest Land To Face Public Scrutiny

As reported by Law360, Representative Rick Mirabito, D-Lycoming, recently introduced House Bill 2318, which, if passed into law, would require the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to provide notice and require public input before leasing state forest lands for unconventional gas development.  Specifically, the bill provides for a public comment period and at least one public hearing or meeting before any land could be leased by the DCNR.  In addition, the public would have access to detailed development plans, including locations of well pads, impoundments, access roads, pipelines, compressor stations and other related structures and facilities, during the comment period.  The DCNR would also have to provide an analysis of potential impacts of the proposed development on ecological, recreational, cultural and aesthetic resources.