It seems that all the phone calls, letters and emails have paid off…for now at least. Thank you to all of you who made your voices heard over the past two weeks! Details are in the article. I am also including the link for the article here because it is longer than what I have copied here.
Rep. George: State Forests Win Reprieve
HARRISBURG – State Rep. Camille “Bud” George, majority chair of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, says Pennsylvania’s state forests won a reprieve with passage of House Bill 1531.
“The state House of Representatives said no to changing our state forests from natural treasures to cash cows,” said Rep. George, D-74 of Clearfield County. “The voices of countless hunters, anglers and outdoor enthusiasts were heard, although the battle to protect our outdoor heritage is far from over.”
Rep. George said the fate of state forests remains up in the air, and the proposal to lease state forestland could resurface.
“The state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources has a prudent system of leasing state land based on sound management practices, not profiteering,” Rep. George said. “To force-feed tens of thousands acres of land owned by the people of Pennsylvania – originally as much as 390,000 acres – is a perverse ‘public option’ for the gas industry.
“A modest tax on gas drillers while continuing prudent forest-management practices would serve Pennsylvania better than putting price tags on public lands,” said Rep. George, whose language establishing a severance tax on gas drillers in Pennsylvania was adopted in HB 1531.
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