Legislation Requires Notice and Public Hearing for Hydraulic Fracture Stimulation

The House and Governmental Affairs Committee of the Louisiana House Of Representatives today approved HB 406 by Representative Tim Burns by substitute, which requires certain persons seeking a permit from the Office of Conservation of the Department of Natural Resources for an operation that involves hydraulic fracture stimulation in a parish in which hydraulic fracture stimulation has not occurred to follow certain notice and public hearing requirements.

Representative Burns filed the bill by substitute because of his concern that the current accelerated timetable for approving hydraulic fracture stimulation would not allow time for adequate public input and consideration.

“There has never been hydraulic fracture stimulation in St. Tammany and the citizens and public officials of St. Tammany need to be fully informed about the full impact on the parish of hydraulic fracture stimulation. I had requested that the applicant voluntarily delay the application, but I received no response to my request. Adequate notice and public input is an important part of the democratic process and activities with such a profound effect on a community require such notice and input,” said Representative Burns.

Representative Paul Hollis said, “House Bill 406 by my colleague and neighbor Representative Tim Burns is common sense legislation that enhances transparency and encourages citizen engagement. By requiring a 30-day public notice from companies looking to expand operations in parishes where hydraulic drilling is non-existent, the citizenry will have adequate time to meet with their elected officials and voice their support or concern.”

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