On Jan. 5, the Independent Fiscal Office issued a report estimating the Act 13 drilling impact fee revenue will drop by more than $55.5 million to $144.8 million from the 2019 total of $200.4 million.

Since 2018, revenue from the Act 13 drilling impact fee has dropped by $107 million — by more than 42.4 percent — from $251.8 million in 2018 to $144.8 million in 2020.

This means a decrease in funding for these key programs in 2020:

  • Counties, Municipalities and Housing: from $109.2 million to $75.9 million — $33.3 million

Marcellus Legacy Fund: from $72.8 million to $50.6 million or $22.2 million

Funding for county conservation districts and state agencies will remain the same.

The IFO said the primary reasons for the decrease in collections include:

Lower Fee Schedule: Due to the price dropping below $2.25, the impact fee schedule decreased by $5,000 per horizontal well compared to CY 2019 levels. Estimated impact: -$52.1 million.

  • Aging Wells: The net impact of (1) reduced collections from aging wells that pay lower fees and wells that become exempt offsetting fees from new wells and (2) any payments for the prior year that were not received in time for disbursement. Estimated impact: -$3.8 million.

To get a copy of the full report, visit www.ifo.state.pa.us

For information on past distributions of Act 13 drilling impact fee revenue, visit the PUC’s Act 13 Impact Fee webpage at www.puc.pa.gov

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