Chenango towns wrestle with individual gas drilling issues

PRESTON – While the powers that control Chenango County’s government continue to chug along trying to keep up with the fast-paced developments in the natural gas industry, individual towns are making their own decisions about the paydirt beneath their feet.

Fortunately for municipalities, they aren’t bound by a County Law 215, a regulation that refers to a New York State law that many say is outdated. The law prohibits non-chartered counties like Chenango, those that separated from an originally “chartered” county decades ago, from entering into leases for more than five years.

Because the lifespan of most gas wells ranges between 30 and 40 years, the promise of negotiated royalty payouts all along the way are unfortunately forfeited by non-chartered counties that are integrated into a spacing unit or approached for an outright lease.

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