Letter to the editor | Taxing our environment

March 26, 2014 

As if we had any doubt, we now know just how badly Gov. Tom Corbett, Sen. Jake Corman and their fellow frack-a-holics in Harrisburg are shafting Pennsylvania.

Let us count the ways:

Fracking extracts natural gas, which, like coal and oil, releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when burned. Result: climate change and global warming.

But Corbett and Corman don’t care enough to consider the risks to us, our children and the future.

Fracking leaves polluted water and land.

But Corbett and Corman don’t care enough to put real environmental regulations in place to protect our state and our people.

And here’s the kicker: If we’re going to frack, we should at least get real money out of the deal. But Corbett and Corman have said we have to coddle these friendly frackers.

As a result, as the AP reported, Pennsylvania collects about one-third (or even less) the average rate in taxes and fees on the natural gas industry charged in West Virginia, Texas, Colorado and Ohio (“Legislative report reveals light Pa. taxes on industry,” CDT, Saturday).

Fracking pollutes our air, land and water but we don’t collect fees at the rate the frackers pay, and expect to pay, elsewhere. Result: Our schools, roads, bridges, libraries and services such as mental health support and literacy programs don’t have adequate funding because, well, “we just don’t have the money.”

It is difficult to imagine worse “leaders” than Corbett and Corman. It is difficult to imagine a worse shafting for Pennsylvania.

Robert D. Shepherd, Pennsylvania Furnace

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