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Chenango leaders highlight economic growth through natural gas development

By: Tyler Murphy, Sun Staff Writer 
Published: May 14th, 2010

NORWICH – Standing in front of the Chenango County Courthouse Thursday, gas company representatives along with local government and business officials passed $656,923 worth of symbolic checks at a press conference highlighting the 2009 tax revenue gained from natural gas development.

“While everyone here can agree that the numbers offered today are quite stunning, not all are in agreement about the risks these activities bring with them. Today, though, we are here to speak to the economic uplift we are experiencing, particularly in Chenango’s northern sector,” said Town of Smyrna Supervisor James B. Bays.

The municipality is one of the first in Chenango County to reap the financial benefits of natural gas development on an unprecedented local scale and Bays was presented a with a mock $83,312 check by Nornew spokesman Dennis Holbrook. The check was representative of all the tax revenue the town gained in 2009 from the company’s activities.

Norse Energy Inc., the Norwegian-based parent company of Nornew, has drilled 23 wells in the county, 13 in the Town of Symrna since 2007.

The check’s amounts were based on the numbers released by the Chenango County Office of Real Property Services on May 1 and reflect the estimated assessed value using last year’s tax rates.

Village of Sherburne Mayor Bill Acee was presented with a $264,569 check representing the Sherburne-Earlville School District’s increased tax revenue.

Holbrook also presented Chenango County Treasurer William Evans with two checks, one representing the tax revenue directly collected by the county of $151,019 and another representing the total tax revenue generated for all other municipalities and school districts in the county in 2009, for $158,022.

Holbrook said the conference was intended to inform the public of the positive impacts of natural gas development, saying there was a lot of “misinformation.”

“We have to do a better job of educating the public on the positive aspects,” he said, referring to his own company. “These amounts could very easily be tens of thousands or millions of dollars in the future.”

 

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There are 194,500 acres represented in the Coalition as of 8/18/2010. The latest gas offers in New York State are $3000/acre with 20% royalties.

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