Anticipating an influx of natural gas drilling in the Southern Tier, the state Department of Environmental Conservation is looking to expand a pair of offices in the region the industry is expected to target.

The DEC estimates it will have to spend $1 million annually for additional office space in Kirkwood in Broome County, and Bath in Steuben County, when it begins permitting high-volume hydraulic fracturing, according to a document obtained through a Freedom of Information Law request.

Gannett's Albany Bureau first reported some of the details included in the document earlier this month. The complete paper gives an inside look at the amount of resources the agency believes it needs to regulate the natural gas industry.

"When we've come up with the number of staff we need ... a lot of the staff would be in the regions where they get the permit applications, and they're kind of the front lines in terms of reviewing them," DEC Commissioner Joseph Martens said Monday. "That's where most of the staff would be necessary."

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