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Shale Is Hale
Fracking Banned Where It Began
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  • Thirdsyphon

    One way to potentially secure community approval for fracking operations would be to allow localities to impose taxes on mineral extraction. I know that states have the authority to do this (and some of them, like Alaska, have profited mightily from it), as does the federal government; but localities lack the authority to collect taxes on oil and gas extraction for themselves.

    What localities do control, though, is land use and zoning. And if localities aren’t able to share in the profits (or even recoup the social costs) of these operations, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that some communities will elect to sharply rein them in or even shut them down.

    Letting localities collect taxes on oil and gas extraction would potentially benefit everyone. Many oilmen who work on fracking operations wind up living in makeshift “man camps”: sprawling trailer parks with no amenities and no social infrastructure. Given the wealth their work creates, they deserve good roads and parks and libraries and public spaces too.

    • FriendlyGoat

      Municipalities “should” be able to rely upon their states to “take care of them” with revenue for the extra burdens, but they can’t.

  • FriendlyGoat

    There is a lot of land to drill upon which is not within city or town limits. The fact that some towns curtail this activity inside their spaces is not going to derail the overwhelming (for now anyway) forces driving the boom in extracting tight oil.

  • Fat_Man

    Denton is possibly not a typical Texas Town. It hosts the University of North Texas (a Texas state institution), which although it is not widely known, is overshadowed by UT Austin and Texas A&M, still has more than 35,000 students. My guess is that this population makes Denton’s political environment untypical of the rest of the state.

    • f1b0nacc1

      I lived not too far from Denton about 10 years ago, and your assessment is absolutely correct. Of course this is really more a NIMBY thing than any real ideological shift.

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