At a meeting this morning in Wheeling, West Virginia, Governor Earl Ray Tomblin stated his intention to call state legislators to Charleston next week for a special session to deal with Marcellus Shale policy. Governor Tomblin made the announcement during a meeting with 400 state and local officials during the 25th Annual Project BEST breakfast at Oglebay Park's Wilson Lodge.
The calling of a special session reflects Governor Tomblin?s clear desire that a Marcellus Shale bill receive the attention and focus it deserves, and before other legislative measures will be addressed during the regular session of the legislature. In making the announcement, Governor Tomblin commented that all of the stakeholders have met and a good and responsible bill will be introduced.
A special legislative committee has been working on and has approved a bill addressing horizontal oil and gas development in West Virginia. But industry has voiced concerns regarding well location restrictions, local regulation of industry practices and other issues which have the potential to impact the ability of West Virginia to continue to attract investment in the growing Marcellus Shale gas play.
Legislation now will undoubtedly impact future development of the oil and gas industry in the state and may impact the growth of industries which will develop along-side the Marcellus industry, including the siting of a cracker facility in Appalachia, which potentially has long reaching impacts upon the development of the chemicals and plastics industries.