Mr. Morelle was among those who voted for New York State's 2005 compulsory integration law -- written by the gas/oil industry and passed without a public hearing. As the DEC website reveals, those landowners who are forced into a drilling unit under this law are treated punitively. The "landowner options" must be read to be believed. Even the New York Farm Bureau, which supports what it calls "responsible drilling" is opposed to this punitive treatment of landowners. Today, in light of the shale gas/oil “gold rush,” the taking of private property rights by energy companies amounts to a government entitlement where the private property owner does not stand on a level playing field. Speaking as someone who was sued, along with other property owners under eminent domain laws, by a Texas gas company backed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, I can tell you it is a nasty experience.
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