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EQB advances well permit fee increase
With two dissenting votes, the Environmental Quality Board is formally moving forward with a proposal by the Department of Environmental Protection to significantly increase permit fees for unconventional wells. The fee will increase to $12,500, from the current $5,000 for non-vertical wells and $4,200 for vertical wells.

The EQB is a 20-member independent board, chaired by the secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection, that adopts all of DEP's regulations. The vote on the permit fee increase came last Wednesday. The next step will be a 30-day public comment permit on the rulemaking.

Funding for DEP's oil and gas program comes from permit fees along with fines and penalties. DEP argues that although drilling - and as a result, permit fee income - is down, the department's oil and gas workload has been increasing.

During a brief discussion at the EQB's May 16 meeting, two members, Public Utility Commission Vice Chairman Andrew Place and House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee Executive Director Richard Fox, both stated that while they are in favor of the regulation, the entire way of funding the oil and gas program must change. The board, they said, cannot allow permit prices to continually increase every three years.
Support needed for Shell ethane pipeline segment in Ohio
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public information session and hearing at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, May 23, to accept comments about water quality impacts related to constructing an ethane supply pipeline in Jefferson, Carroll and Harrison counties. The meeting will take place at Harrison Central Junior/Senior High School, 440 E. Market St., Cadiz.
The Shell Pipeline Company has applied for a water quality certification to build an 11-mile, 10-inch ethane supply pipeline from the existing MarkWest facility in Cadiz to a junction point two miles southeast of Scio and continuing with a 32.6-mile, 12-inch pipeline from the Utica East Ohio plant in Scio. The pipeline, known as the Falcon Ethane Pipeline, will continue into West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Ohio EPA also will accept written comments on the application through May 30. Anyone may submit written comments or request to be placed on a mailing list for information by writing to: Ohio EPA, Division of Surface Water, Permits Processing Unit, P.O. Box 1049, Columbus, OH 43216-1049, or emailingepa.dswcomments@epa.ohio.gov. The application and related materials are available for review online.
PIOGA's 100th Anniversary Celebration
This year we are commemorating 100 years of proudly serving Pennsylvania's oil and gas industry. The big celebration will be on Wednesday, July 18, appropriately enough at Drake Well Museum in Titusville. Also in the works is a PIOGA Political Action Committee event the evening before that will feature an excursion train ride on the Oil Creek & Titusville Railroad.

PIOGA traces its roots back to the 1918 founding of the Pennsylvania Oil, Gas and Minerals Association, which you can read about in the January issue of The PIOGA Press.

Please mark you calendar and watch your email for more details about the day. We'll also be posting information on the event page of our website. It will be an enjoyable day honoring our trade association and the history of Pennsylvania's oil and gas industry, and we hope you'll be a part of it.
Clean Diesel Grant program opens
Last week we reported on a package of grant programs, collectively known as Driving PA Forward, funded in large part by the state's $118-million share of the Volkswagen diesel emissions settlement. The Department of Environmental Protection has announced the availability of the first grant opportunity.

The Pennsylvania State Clean Diesel Grant program is now accepting applications accepting to replace, repower, or retrofit fleet diesel-powered trucks, buses, and other vehicles and equipment. The application package, including guidance and application instructions, is available DEP's Driving PA Forward webpage at www.dep.pa.gov/drivepaforward. DEP will accept applications until July 6.

A webinar on the Pennsylvania State Clean Diesel Grant Program will be held June 6. See the program guidelines for registration information.
Recruit a new member, get rewarded!
PIOGA is rolling out a membership incentive program intended to actively promote membership growth and participation in PIOGA while rewarding active members for their consistent efforts toward these goals. Here are the guidelines:
  • Recruiting a new member earns a credit equal to 10 percent of the amount of the first year dues of the newly recruited member.
  • Credits must be applied toward reduction of PIOGA dues, PIOGA event fees, PIOGA sponsorships, PIOGA advertisement (PIOGA Press and eWeekly only) or PIOGA donations.
  • To claim any credits, your membership must be current and in good standing.
  • You must inform the PIOGA membership committee of your member(s) recruited.
  • There is no limitation on how many new members can be recruited per year.
  • Credits will not be issued in the form of cash or legal tender.
  • Credits cannot be claimed for renewing members who have been in default less than two years.
  • Credits must be applied/used within the calendar year of being credited to your PIOGA account or will automatically be applied to your next year's dues.
  • You may apply credits toward partial or progressive prepayments to your PIOGA account.
  • The incentive program is initially retroactive, beginning January 1, 2018.
Questions? Want to participate? Contact Robert H. Beatty, Jr., Membership Committee Chair, at rhbeatty@gmail.com or 814-590-4498, or Debbie Oyler, Director of Member Services, at debbie@pioga.org or 724-933-7306 ext. 22.
Golf, anyone? Don't miss the 2018 Ted Cranmer Memorial
Registration is now available for one of our members' favorite PIOGA summer events - the Ted Cranmer Memorial Golf Outing and Steak Fry, taking place this year on Monday, June 4, again at Wanango Country Club in Reno.

The day of fun and networking remembers Ted Cranmer, the long-time PIOGA and POGAM board member who passed away in December 2016. The success of the Wanango outing was one of Ted's passions for 10 years, and the event raised thousands of dollars to benefit the mission of the association. We are pleased to continue to honor Ted's legacy with this event and hope you come and enjoy a day of golf and camaraderie with the great folks in our industry.

Find out more about registering and sponsoring. And remember, if you don't care to golf, you can always come just for the social hour and dinner.

2018 Ted Cranmer Memorial Golf Outing & Steak Fry

Save the Date! PIOGA'S 100th Anniversary Celebration


PIOGA member incentive program. Did you know that by recruiting a new member you can earn credits that can be used toward PIOGA event fees, sponsorships, advertising or offsetting your own dues? Learn more by clicking here.

Need to find some resource documents that were on the legacy Members Only Area?  Click here. If prompted for a password, use pioga-13.