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Monday, December 26, 2011

Anti HB1950 and SB1100 Being Considered in the PA State House


Latest Press Releases & News
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 4, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
The End of Local Self Government?
PA House Bill (HB 1950)
PA Senate Bill (SB 1100)
Eliminate Local Zoning
& ALL Local Regulation
of Natural Gas & Oil Drilling
The Luzerne County-based group, Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition (GDAC), along with several other Pennsylvania community groups, are collectively voicing their opposition to Pennsylvania House Bill 1950 in a jointly signed letter to government leaders.

HB 1950 is a bill, passed on November 2nd
 by the House Finance Committee that threatens to strip local governments of the ability to create ordinances that fit the desires and needs of their residents.

In the jointly signed letter, entitled “Who Is Stripping What Was Left of Community Rights from PA Municipalities?”, community groups point to Governor Thomas Corbett and some Pennsylvania State representatives as the responsible parties.
"We clearly need a separation of corporation and state. What began as a drilling problem is now a democracy problem," said Wanda Guthrie, a Westmoreland County resident. "Many municipalities are working diligently and thoughtfully to draft ordinances that will protect their communities through careful zoning and municipal codes. Each PA community is unique - a state-mandated one-size-fits-all solution is not the answer."
Our state government should honor and protect Pennsylvanian’s rights to decide acceptable risk for their own community, rather than showing favoritism to an industry. This is not just any industry- it's heavy industry that comes with environmental and health consequences." 
In response to residents’ growing concern about drilling, an increasing number of municipalities are either banning this heavy industry within their boundaries or enacting community rights ordinances. For a complete list of bans and moratoria go to: http://shalethreat.org/styled/bansmoratoria.html.
In addition to stripping local governments of the right to create ordinance limiting oil and gas activity, it also outlines a drilling impact fee. Locally, Luzerne County residents may not see any of its share of a severance tax, even though it has recently become a hotbed of Marcellus Shale activity, including metering stations, pipelines and compressor stations. HB 1950 lays out a complicated formula for municipalities that do not have wells.
GDAC is calling on residents and local government officials to contact state legislators and the governor to oppose HB 1950, which will soon be moving to the floor of the House. 
As stated in Article I, section 27 of the PA Constitution: the people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment. Pennsylvania government has a trusteeship responsibility to protect that environment on behalf of future generations. 
For more information or to make arrangements to have a speaker from
the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition to do a present to your group-
call 570.266.5116 or email gdacoaltion@gmail.com
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 11th, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
An Open Letter to Concerned Back Mountain Residents:

Proposed Local Zoning Changes
Will Allow Industrial Activities in
Agricultural & Residential Areas

Dear Concerned Residents-
As an avowed & unrepentant minimalist, I continually try to see the forest for the trees...

Dallas Township, Kingston Township & other local municipalities are proposing revisions to their zoning ordinances to deal with the ongoing invasion of gas drilling corporate interests into our rural communities. Unfortunately the approach being considered will have an adverse and detrimental effect on our way of life. 
They have acceded to the dictates & recommendations provided by the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS.) This is a non-profit association that purports to advise our elected township supervisors on matters of local governance.

This would be all to the good if not for the fact that PSATS has been infiltrated & totally influenced by the gas industry corporate interests. Main sponsors for the PSATS conference in Hersey PA on April 17–20th are Chesapeake Energy, Range Resources, Talisman Energy, Marcellus Shale Coalition & Pennoni Engineering. 
Don’t be deceived by industry created media releases that your local elected officials are trying to protect you.

Concerned residents are encouraged to attend the Dallas Zoning Board
Hearing on Thursday April 28th & the VOTE on Tuesday May 3rd
at Dallas Twp. Municipal Bldg, 601 Tunkhannock Highway, Dallas, PA 18612
You are being used as dupes in a cruel hoax. By the dictates of the revised ordinances township supervisors will be required to issue conditional permits for gas drilling, hydraulic fracturing, gas transmission pipelines, compressor stations, metering stations, gas processing plants & all associated equipment & operations in Districts zoned as Agricultural & Manufacturing. 
Conservation Districts are exempted from these conditional uses, however only a small portion of land is zoned as such. The Kingston Township ordinance takes it even a step further by allowing conditional use for horizontal drilling & hydraulic fracturing in Districts zoned as Residential.

Passage of any of these ordinances will open the flood gates to the industrialization of your rural & peaceful communities. The conditions imposed on the gas industry by these ordinances are simply not stringent enough to protect your interests & are in fact the same conditions that the industry has already imposed on themselves.
The real purpose of these ordinances is to take the pressure off of your elected officials & negate their oaths to protect the health, safety & welfare of their constituents. Township Solicitors & Planning Consultants are in favor of enacting these ordinances because it would keep them in compliance with the PA Municipal Planning Code which parrots the dictates of the PA 1984 Oil/Gas Act & will avoid involving them in conflict.
Dallas Township’s current zoning ordinance requires that a special exception is required for industrial activities such as natural gas compressors & metering stations. This requires that an application be subjected to a review by a Zoning Hearing Board & could be denied if the Board determined that the proposed use was incompatible with the zoning district. 
As evidenced by the huge turnout at the Dallas Middle School for recent hearings held to discuss the application by Chief Gathering to build a compressor station/metering station & later a metering station near the Dallas School Complex, there is considerable public support to restrict these activities. 
Under the proposed ordinances the Township Zoning Officer would be required to issue a permit under a conditional use. There would be no hearing where residents could express their displeasure. Is there any question why the industry is intent on the enactment of these ordinances? Decisions by local municipalities have the potential of decreasing the industry’s already bloated bottom lines & resistance by local residents trying to protect their way of life is causing them a degree of consternation. 
Now is the time for you to take a strong stand against the destruction of your communities. Attend the hearings on these ordinances in your municipalities & demand that your elected officials not sell out your constitutionally guaranteed rights to clean air & water.
Neil E. Turner
VP Gas Drilling Awarness Coalition
of Luzerne County
Resident of
Harveys Lake, PA
==========================================================================
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 7th, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
Free & Open to the PUBLIC- Concerned Citizens Are Urged to Attend-
The Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition's 3nd presentation of our
“Educational Series for an Informed Citizenry”
 
"Life In The Gas Fields"
by Calvin Tillman, Mayor of DISH, Texas 
& Tim Ruggiero of Decatur, Texas
.

From insightful first hand experiences, Tillman & Ruggiero will conduct a frank presentation/discussion of the
dangerous reality of living among gas drilling, compressor stations, & pipelines, plus the hazardous environmental
quality-of-life threat they pose to communities from toxic pollution of drinking water, air, soil & property values.

Monday, April 27th at 7:00 PM
Temple B’nai B’rith
Bergman Auditorium
408 Wyoming Avenue, Kingston, PA 
Mayor Tillman & Mr. Ruggiero will be travelling throughout the Marcellus Shale regions speaking to
these communities about the negative impacts of gas drilling & its associated industrial activities.

This event is sponsored Tillman & Ruggiero is also co-sponsored by the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition
which includes Luzerne County citizens concerned about the potential problems gas drilling by "fracking"
(hydraulic fracturing) & its associated industries will bring to our populated & developed areas.

GDAC's goal is to educate & thereby protect our communities & environment from exploitative gas drilling.
Concerns include polluted drinking water, toxic waste, radioactive mud, dirty air, depleted water habitat, noise,
eminent domain, loss of farmland, loss of tourism, higher crime rates, increased traffic, more industrial accidents,
lowered property values, & increased local taxes.
For more information or to make arrangements to have a speaker from
the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition to do a present to your group-
call 570.266.5116 or email gdacoaltion@gmail.com
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com.
==================================================================
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 24th, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
Statement to Dallas Area School Parents on the Status
of the Chief Natural Gas Compressor Station Application
Dear Concerned Parents:

Recent articles concerning the proposed Compressor Station in Dallas Township indicated that Chief is allegedly
investigating relocating the Compressor Station to another site, instead of next to the Dallas schools.
Because Chief had intended to file an amended application to Dallas Township even before this recent revelation
Zoning Officer Len Kozick said there will no Zoning Hearings scheduled until an amended application is received.
If, after considering another site, Chief decides to continue efforts to locate the Compressor Station next to the
schools, there will a Public Notice period of two weeks and a re-scheduled Zoning Hearing. 
GDAC will closely monitor this issue and will publicize information as soon as it is available.
Two items that are currently under consideration by the Compressor Station Committee:
1) GDAC does not take the position that as long as it’s not in my backyard, then it’s ok. If the neighbors around
the proposed new site ask for assistance, we will consider how we might be helpful.
2) In the article in the CV on Monday about the Compressor Station tour, Chief’s Steve Hamilton mentioned that it
wasn’t the station he would be concerned about – it would be the pipeline the gas will go into. Ted Wurfel agreed.

Senator Baker is currently sponsoring a Gas Pipeline Safety Bill – GDAC is in the process of proposing some key
modifications to this bill that would improve pipeline safety even further. Everyone who is concerned about the
safety of the pipelines in front of the Dallas Schools should get involved in this effort.
Thank you,
GDAC Compressor Committee
For more information or to make arrangements to have a speaker from
the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition to do a present to your group-
call 570.266.5116 or email gdacoaltion@gmail.com
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com.
===============================================================
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 22nd, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
Free & Open to the PUBLIC- Concerned Citizens Are Urged to Attend-
The Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition's 2nd presentation for the
“Educational Series for an Informed Citizenry”
 
"Public Health Impacts of Natural Gas COMPRESSOR STATIONS"
a frank discussion by Dr Conrad Daniel Volz & Ms Samantha Malone
. of the University of Pittsburgh


Dr Volz’s research is focused primarily on how industrial & municipal contaminants, (including toxic heavy metals & elements) & endocrine disrupting chemicals (particularly those that are estrogenic) move through the air, water, soil & groundwater & affect humans & how to block this movement.

Monday, March 7th at 7:30 PM
Misericordia University
Insalaco Hall- Rooms 216-21
301 Lake Street, Dallas, PA 18612
 . 
Conrad Daniel Volz, Dr.PH, MPH is an Assistant Professor at the University of Pittsburgh's Environmental & Occupational Health at the Graduate School of Public Health, Director for its Environmental Health Risk Assessment Certificate Program, & Director for the Center for Healthy Environments & Communities. He also has a secondary appointment as an Assistant Professor in
the School of Law & is a technical consultant to the University of Pittsburgh Environmental Law Clinic-
& specializes in human & ecological receptor exposure assessment & environmental spread of contaminants.
An additional presentation will be given by Samantha Malone, MPH, CPH, of the University of Pittsburgh's Center for Healthy Environments & Communities Communications. She is the founder & webmaster ofFrackTracker.org an online mapping system to inform citizens of the extent & impact of
Gas Drilling in the Marcellus Shale areas.
For more information or to make arrangements to have a speaker from
the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition to do a present to your group-
call 570.266.5116 or email gdacoaltion@gmail.com
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com.
==================================================================
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE January 28, 2011
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
Dallas Schools Parents Concerned about Compressor Station
Parents & taxpayers in Dallas Township concerned about Gas Compressor Station
near Fairground Road, approximately 1,300 feet from Dallas Schools complex. 
Natural Gas Compressor Stations are where the gathering lines bring the gas from the wells to be "cleaned" for market. It will be there as long as drilling occurs in Northeast Pennsylvania. It removes all the moisture (gas leaves the well in liquid form) and all the contaminants (uranium, NORM, chemicals, heavy metals) and is where all the gas is sent to the transportation line or trucks to market. 
Parents are concerned that a Compressor Station is major industry and emits high levels of pollution (air, noise, potential spills from waste being transported, truck traffic). They are also concerned about a compressor station’s high potential for explosions.
Concerned residents are encouraged to attend the Dallas Twp. Zoning Meeting-
Dallas Twp. Municipal Bldg, on Wednesday, Februrary 9th at 7 PM.
Parent Kim Jacobs states, ""It just makes no sense that anyone would even consider constructing a compressor system so close to a school complex. i hope the people in charge of approving or rejecting this have done suitable research and are weighing in on all of the negative aspects and potential problems associated with compressor stations. We all need to put the best interest of the Dallas students and residents in the surrounding area first."
Students themselves, are concerned, too. Dallas High School senior Demetra Szatkowski states, “I am concerned not only for myself and my siblings, but for all the people in the Dallas School District. It is shocking that the majority of people in this area do not know about this, and I certainly hope that the people entrusted to protect us will not allow us to be put at risk. Harming children for a profit makes absolutely no sense.
Dallas residents in cooperation with the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition have organized and have created fliers and a video opposing the compressor station available at www.gdacoalition.org. A Facebook page - SOS - (Save Our School) has also been started and a petition opposing the compressor station as currentlt planned is in the works.
The Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition includes Luzerne County citizens concerned about the potential problems gas drilling by horizontal fracturing (“fracking”) will bring to this populated and developed area. Concerns include polluted water supplies, toxic waste, radioactive mud, dirty air, depleted water habitat, noise, eminent domain, loss of farmland, loss of tourism, higher crime rates, more traffic, more accidents, lowered property values, and increased taxes. The goal is to protect our communities and environment from exploitative gas drilling.
For more information or to make arrangements to have a speaker from
the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition to do a present to your group-
call 570.266.5116 or email gdacoaltion@gmail.com
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com.
==================================================================
"X-Country" Band Reunites for
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Fundraiser-
Sunday, January 30, from 5 PM - 10 PM
Brews Bros. West
75 Main Street in Luzerne
Admission is $10
Northeast Pennsylvania's hottest bands -- including a reunion of "X-Country" -- will perform a benefit concert for the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition of Luzerne County. The kitchen will be open as well as a cash bar. There will also be a basket raffle with great prizes, including a flat screen television.
The Scheduled Band Line-up Includes:
5 PM to 6 PM:
“Southern Sky”
 featuring members of "Abilene" and the "New York Times Band"

6:30 PM to 7:30 PM:
"As Is"
 playing classic & modern rock
8:30 PM:
“X-Country
 NEPA’s infamous Modern Country Party Band Reunion.

Scott Cannon, guitarist of X-Country, encourages everyone to attend. 'X-Country' thought that the issue of gas drilling is so important to our region that we've decided to re-unite after 4 years in support of GDAC. It's sure to be a great night."

This event is sponsored by the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition which includes Luzerne County citizens concerned about the potential problems gas drilling by horizontal fracturing (“fracking”) will bring to this populated and developed area.

Concerns include polluted drinking water supplies, toxic waste, radioactive mud, dirty air, depleted water habitat, noise, eminent domain, loss of farmland, loss of tourism, higher crime rates, increased traffic and collisions, lowered property values, and increased taxes. The goal is to protect our communities and environment from exploitative gas drilling.

For more information or reservations, call 570.266.5116 or contact gdac@mail.com.
“Like” Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition on Facebook.com
=====================================================================
For Immediate Release December 3, 2010
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition Media Relations
570.266.5116
contact gdac@mail.com.
GAS DRILLING AWARENESS COALITION OFFERS BUS TRIP TO HARRISBURG
FOR A STATEWIDE RALLY TO SUPPORT A GAS DRILLING MORATORIUM
JAN 18th DURING INAUGURATION OF TOM CORBETT AS PA GOVERNOR
There will be a statewide rally for a moratorium on gas drilling on January 18, 2011 (Inauguration day) at 9:30 a.m. meeting at 3rd and Market, Strawberry Square, Harrisburg. 
So that concerned citizens from Northeast Pennsylvania are able to attend, the Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition has organized this bus trip. PUBLIC IS INVITED.
Meet at Wegman's, Wilkes-Barre, at 6:15 a.m. Bus departs at 6:30 a.m. sharp. 
Approximate return time is 5:30 PM. 
The cost is $20 and includes transportation and gratuity. All incidental costs are extra.
Reservations are required- please makes checks payable to:
Gas Drilling Awareness Coalition
PO Box 275, Dallas, PA 18612. 
For more information or reservations, call 570.266.5116 or contact gdac@mail.com.

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