Letters To The Editor 11/8/2018
God’s work awaits
Editor: The violence seems to be multiplying.
I can’t help but think that President Trump bears some responsibility. He is our leader. We take our cues from him. I believe he tacitly gives permission to his followers to stretch the boundaries of what is acceptable.
When he states things such as, “I’d like to punch that guy in the face” or, “I’d like to body slam the media,” what are his followers to think, especially the more impressionable ones? It must be all right, they think.
More important, what does he teach our children? If he won’t take the lead, then the rest of us must. The message is simple and tested by time: “Do unto others…”, “Love thy neighbor…”, “We are all one…” and so forth.
We have been taught well by our parents and teachers and by the wisdom handed down through the ages. We must relearn it and reteach it and practice it before it’s too late. The work we are called to is God’s work.
JAMES P. CONNORS
Editor’s note: The writer is a former mayor of Scranton.
Solace for suffering
Editor: I have been thinking about immigrants and my Hebrew brothers and sisters at Tree of Life Synagogue.
I have never and will never stand by while people suffer. I pray that people aren’t afraid of the domestic terrorists that the commander in chief uses for his base of support. I have scraped better off my shoes than the suspect who shot up the synagogue in Pittsburgh.
I witnessed an act of God when the Amish forgave a man who killed their children in 2006 in a Lancaster County school. That was something I couldn’t do.
Gas fuels growth
Editor: Record natural gas production in Pennsylvania is driving incredible investments, especially in natural gas power generation projects.
A recent report from Energy In Depth, an industry group, detailed how 16 different natural gas power generation projects are under development, or are operating now, because of Marcellus Shale development. These projects represent $13.9 billion of new investment in the commonwealth and the development of these projects creates thousands of jobs.
Besides being massive economic drivers, projects like these are a net benefit for the environment. Natural gas is cleaner than traditional energy sources, which helps keep Pennsylvania moving toward its goal of emission reductions to contribute to cleaner air quality.
In fact, between 2005 and 2015, Pennsylvania had a 30 percent decrease in carbon emissions from electricity generation facilities. Every Pennsylvanian can get behind cleaner air, well-paying jobs and a strong economy.
CABOT OIL AND GAS CORP.,
Editor: Policies advanced in two recent Times-Tribune editorials are misguided and represent bad public policy.
A proposal regarding natural gas lease agreements (“House whiffs on fair gas royalties,”Oct. 12) ignores settled case law, for which the solution proposed is an unconstitutional effort to change existing contracts. The severance tax proposal pushed by Gov. Tom Wolf and supported by an Oct. 21 editorial (“Fair gas tax closer to reality”), would harm the commonwealth’s competitiveness, cost good-paying jobs and increase home energy costs for consumers.
Regarding natural gas lease agreements, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court affirmed and upheld that royalties are properly calculated by deducting the costs associated with getting natural gas to market. When the court issued a ruling in 2010, it never asked for legislative clarification and made clear the guaranteed one-eighth minimum is properly calculated by deducting post-production costs. Just like any contract, if there is a dispute over terms, the courts, not politicians, are the best venue to resolve it.
As to taxing natural gas, Pennsylvania has a significant tax called the impact fee. It has generated nearly $1.5 billion in new revenue over the past few years, with revenue benefitting Philadelphia and its surrounding counties where no drilling occurs. Combined with other business taxes, natural gas development has generated billions of dollars in Pennsylvania revenue over the past few years.
Ironically, additional energy taxes also would burden royalty owners — the group that’s the focus of the newspaper’s Oct. 12 editorial — who would bear a share of that tax burden.
We have a generational opportunity to leverage this low-cost, abundant shale resource into long-term economic, environmental and national security gains. But the policies advocated in these editorials would close the door to energy investment and stand to hurt Pennsylvanians.
MARCELLUS SHALE COALITION,
Limits to drilling
Editor: State Rep. Jonathan Fritz, of Honesdale, recently said $20 billion worth of shale gas is underground in Wayne County.
Landowners have the right to what is under their property, and if fracking is prohibited, they should be compensated, he said.
Fritz said he opposes regulation, so who would protect the property of neighbors whose land does not have shale gas, or who choose not to sell drilling rights to gas companies? Shouldn’t they be compensated for loss of property value due to contaminated water, increased noise, air pollution and truck traffic?
He spoke about the “economic opportunity” of gas drilling, but ignored the major economic engine of our area, the recreational use of our lakes, rivers and streams. Since when do the rights of the few outweigh the rights of the many?
Fracking could harm our health and that of our children and destroy the unique natural beauty of our area.
BETHANY, WAYNE COUNTY