Friday, July 17, 2015

Senator Hutchinson Introduces Legislation to Economic Development in Rural Pennsylvania

On July 10, 2015, Senate Bill No. 886, sponsored by Pennsylvania Senator Scott Hutchinson, was referred to the Community, Economic and Recreational Development Committee.

In his co-sponsorship memorandum, Senator Hutchinson explained that the introduced legislation is designed to establish the Pennsylvania Affordable Energy Development Zones Program. This program will allow the state to promote economic development and attract new businesses in distressed rural areas with large supplies of natural gas.

The bill defines PAED zones as areas “in one or more political subdivisions in which unconventional gas wells are located.” The bill also stipulates that new businesses, in addition to meeting certain employment and capital investment criteria, must perform “a trade, profession or business involving energy or manufacturing, or a related activity that uses natural gas from an unconventional formation.” In return, new businesses will benefit from state tax exemptions.

Written by Chloe Marie - Research Fellow

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