This column is presented weekly by the Public Education sub-committee of the Clinton County Natural Gas Task Force in an effort to provide accurate, up-to-date information on activities surrounding the Marcellus Shale formation and the natural gas exploration industry. For more information on Task Force activities, visit the Task Force page on the Clinton County government website at www.clintoncountypa.com.
Two separate workshops, "Financial Considerations Relating to Marcellus Development in Pennsylvania," and "Marcellus Shale and Pipelines - Understanding Natural Gas Development Issues," are scheduled for this month and next in Lock Haven.
The Penn State Cooperative Extension office is hosting the workshops, both of which are free and open to the public. People are asked to pre-register for the workshops by contacting the extension office at 570-726-0022.
The "Financial Considerations Relating to Marcellus Development in Pennsylvania" workshop is slated for Sept. 28 at Lock Haven University's East Campus (the former Lock Haven High School) at 301 E. Church St. in Lock Haven. The session will run from 7 to 9:30 p.m. in Room J-101.
"Speakers will include Extension, Certified Public Accountant (CPA), legal and financial management experts who will discuss the strategies for financial planning," says Jim Ladlee, Clinton County extension director."Topics will include the Marcellus market economics, financial and tax arrangements to optimize retained income, and estate and investment planning."
Workshop presenters will include Tom Murphy, co-director of The Marcellus Center for Outreach and Research, who will discuss Marcellus economics; Nancy Montanye, a Certified Public Accountant and member of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants, who will cover tax planning strategies; John Rodgers, senior vice president and manager of Fulton Bank's corporate banking division, who will discuss handling an economic windfall; and John A. Shoemaker, an attorney with the law firm of Greevy and Associates, who will talk about estate planning options. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions.
While emphasizing the program is for educational purposes and is not intended to serve as legal advice, Ladlee says the workshop will offer participants a greater understanding of the financial issues and planning necessary following the drilling of a gas well.
"This program is intended to inform people of the types of needs a landowner should address after signing a lease for property held within the Marcellus Shale."
The second workshop, "Marcellus Shale and Pipelines Understanding Natural Gas Development Issues," will be held Oct. 13.
The 7 p.m. session will take place in Room J-101 of Lock Haven University's East Campus (the former Lock Haven High School) on East Church Street in Lock Haven. The session is free and open to all, but people interested in participating are asked to pre-register by contacting the extension office at 570-726-0022.
Workshop discussion will include the background and need for pipeline development in the Marcellus Shale region, various regulations and safety issues, and the legalities of right-of-way agreements.
Presenters will be Dave Messersmith with the Penn State Extension Marcellus Team, who will provide a pipeline overview and development information; Andrew Geibel, a gas safety inspector with the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, who will discuss state pipeline regulations and safety; and Dale Tice, an attorney with the law firm of Marshall Parker & Associates, who will focus on understanding right-of-way agreements.
Like the first workshop, there will also be an opportunity for the panel to address questions from the audience.
"The purpose of this workshop is to give participants a greater understanding of the pipeline infrastructure, regulations and safety issues, and what type of needs a landowner or community member with property within the Marcellus Shale area might want to address," said Ladlee. "We always make sure people understand these workshops are not intended to replace legal advice, but they do offer some good background education."
People interested in more information on either workshop can visit the Penn State Extension website at www.extension.psu.edu/naturalgas.