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Monthly Archives: July 2012

State Firemen Testify at House GOP Policy Committee Hearing

Firemen’s Association of the State of Pennsylvania (FASP), along with the Pennsylvania Fire and Emergency Services Institute (PFESI), provided testimony before the House Republican Policy CommitteeERG was pleased to help the state House Republican Policy Committee at a hearing to address issues facing the state’s volunteer firefighters and emergency responders. ERG Partners represents the Firemen’s Association of the State of Pennsylvania (FASP), which, along with the Pennsylvania Fire and Emergency Services Institute (PFESI), provided the committee with a 30,000 foot view of challenges plaguing the fire and emergency services community. The organizations also offered possible legislative solutions.


Agencies, Committees Continue to Meet During Legislative Summer Recess

The General Assembly is currently on summer recess, with members slated to return to Harrisburg September 24.  Between now and then, however, the four caucus Policy Committees will be holding various hearings throughout the state to focus on issues they feel will be important in the fall and the November 6 elections.  All 203 districts in the state House of Representatives, and 25 of 50 seats in the state Senate are on the ballot this November, but attention will likely focus on no more than four or five Senate races and a dozen state House races.


Congress Still Considering Farm Bill, Other Actions

Meanwhile, their federal counterparts are working on a variety of issues, attempting to better position themselves for November elections, all promising their policies will pull the U.S. away from the “economic cliff” it is teetering on before it breaks for August recess.


Pennsylvania Plant Using Treated Mine Water to Generate Power

A new micro-hydro plant came online this week in Tioga County that uses acid mine water to generate electricity. The Antrim treatment plant is the first facility of its kind in the state, and will help to solve an existing water pollution problem by giving useful life to a treated waste product.

The idea of […]


2012 State Budget Signed; Energy Issues Move through Other Legislation

Minutes before the midnight deadline on June 30, Governor Tom Corbett signed the state’s 2012-13 budget, which reflected more than $700 million more in spending that the original February budget proposal.  Also delivered to Corbett were changes in the state’s fiscal and tax codes, which authorize budget spending and revenue collections, and also included language for the ethane cracker tax credit.


Fiscal Code Impacts Energy Industries

The state’s fiscal code bill (SB 1263) contained several energy related items and issues.

The legislation sets bonds for conventional oil and gas wells at $2,500 or a blanket bond of $25,000, and requires the EQB to undertake a study of conventional well bond requirements, thus restoring pre-Act 13 limits which can be expanded after the study.


Biofuels Bill in Governor’s Hands

After almost four years, the passage of HB 807 in the last week of session, gives the state Ag Department regulatory authority and enforcement tools over the biodiesel blends mandated under Act 78 of 2008.  The legislation amends the Pennsylvania Biofuel Development and In-State Production Incentive Act.  Governor Corbett must sign or veto the bill by July 6.


Energy Crops Bill Sent to Governor

The General Assembly also passed HB 608, sponsored by Rep. Michelle Brooks (R-Crawford), which encourages and promotes the use of switchgrass and other bioenergy crops to vegetate strip mined lands in the Commonwealth.  The bill is seen as a boost for biomass energy crop production and for small oilseeds for biodiesel production.

Under the bill, DEP is to make available – at no cost to the permittee – guarantees to cover Stage III reclamation liability under a bond if the site is revegetated using switchgrass, camelina, canola, and other bioenergy crops such as fast growing willows or poplars. The bill is now before Governor Corbett for signature with a July 6 deadline.


Other Energy Bills Held Over to Fall

Several energy and utility-related bills failed to get final consideration during the pressure packed last few days of June.