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Moon to Hold Public Hearing on Marcellus Shale Drilling

The township re-examines local Marcellus shale zoning issues.

Moon Township will host a public hearing in December to solicit resident input on the community's oil and gas drilling ordinances, including local regulations for Marcellus shale drilling.

Township supervisors will likely adopt an ordinance that evening, restricting oil and gas drilling activities to non-residential portions of the community.

The township must comply with new conditions of the state's Act 13 law concerning Marcellus shale drilling activities in the state.

In 2011, the Pennsylvania General Assembly approved a piece of legislation that stripped communities of the ability to control oil and gas drilling within their municipality. 

Moon officials spent much of the year working to revise the township's existing oil and gas drilling ordinances to include provisions regulating Marcellus shale drilling. 

The township scrapped those plans when Act 13 was approved. 

But after more than a year of legal wrangling over the controversial statewide law, municipalities again have some jurisdiction to regulate drilling activity. 

"It's really to get input from community members," said Gavin Robb, an attorney for the firm Tucker Arensberg, which the township retained in 2011 as special counsel on Marcellus shale-related issues. "(The meeting) will be to get feedback on the ordinance." 

Robb said the township must pass ordinances complying with the new conditions of Act 13 by Dec. 7. 

No Marcellus shale drilling yet takes place in Moon Township. 

The Allegheny County Airport Authority on Sept. 26 released bid specifications for natural gas drilling on the more than 9,000 acres of land surrounding Pittsburgh International Airport, much of which is located in Moon Township. 

The public hearing will be held at 7 p.m. Dec. 5 in the Moon Municipal Building on Beaver Grade Road. Check back with Patch for coverage. 

Tell us in the comments: What parts of Moon Township, if any, would be suitable for Marcellus shale drilling? Would you like to see drilling take place in the township or on airport land?

Nick October 04, 2012 at 02:50 PM
Learn more about ACT and all the problems it's causing: shalestuff.com

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