Gas drilling group, county eye road use accord

A natural gas drilling outfit could be drawing more water from the Town of Erwin, if a road use agreement with Steuben County is approved.

The water will be drawn from a site across the street from Chilson-Wilcox in Gang Mills, with access to the location on County Route 79 off State Route 417.

County Public Works Commissioner Vincent Spagnoletti said the drilling company, East Resources, is now hauling as many as five truckloads of water a day from Erwin on County Route 79.

The road use agreement would allow East Resources, a division of Shell Oil, to haul more water to its operations in Pennsylvania, Spagnoletti said. The driller is among several companies now drilling in the Marcellus Shale natural gas deposits in Pennsylvania.

Spagnoletti said road agreements with any natural gas drilling companies should require roads be repaired to top condition. The county also has the right to demand roads be brought up to good standards during use by the driller, he said.

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