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Tobash’s Anthracite Bill Promoting PA Jobs and Affordable Energy Signed by Governor
10/25/2012
HARRISBURG – Rep. Mike Tobash’s (R-Schuylkill/Berks) anthracite bill which promotes the use of low-cost domestic energy, helps jobs in Pennsylvania and gives coal mining companies across the state the opportunity to grow, was signed into law by Gov. Tom Corbett on Wednesday, Oct. 24.

“Increasing the supply of coal across Pennsylvania is an issue that is important to residents living in the 125th District and many other regions of our state,” said Tobash. “Recently, the coal industry has drawn a lot of national attention, and I think it’s important that we realize how far we’ve come as far as our current mining standards go, and how valuable this energy resource is. Coal, particularly anthracite, has continuously been the most affordable form of electric generation in the state.”

House Bill 1813 makes required bonding more readily available to mine operators, which allows them to use their own capital to invest in growing and expanding their operations. The bonding is required by the Commonwealth to ensure sufficient funds are available to reclaim a mining site in the event the operator defaults.

“House Bill 1813 addresses a critical need for mining operators in the anthracite region and around the state,” said Duane Feagley, executive director of the Pennsylvania Anthracite Council. “At the same time, the new law will allow for good-paying jobs, ongoing reclamation of abandoned mines and treatment of acid mine drainage sites.”

The measure amends Pennsylvania’s Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation regulations to provide for the use of Land Reclamation Financial Guarantees (LRFGs) for new and re-mining projects. The new law also codifies the source of funds for Acid Mine Discharges that have been ordered by the courts. House Bill 1813 will help mine reclamation efforts, lower electric generation costs and help create jobs.

It can cost Pennsylvania taxpayers as much as $10,000 an acre to reclaim a mine site. Prices like that aren’t affordable without an active mining industry in our state, Tobash said.

“I commend Representative Tobash for shepherding House Bill 1813 through the Legislature,” said George Ellis, president of the Pennsylvania Coal Alliance. “This law is a balanced proposal that will encourage environmental remediation while fostering mining and job growth.”

This new law is scheduled to take effect in 60 days.

For more information on House Bill 1813, or any other state-related issue, contact Tobash’s office in Schuylkill Haven by calling (570) 385-8235.

State Representative Mike Tobash
125th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Krisinda Corbin 
kcorbin@pahousegop.com
717.705.2032
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