(Harrisburg) According to prime sponsor Senator Gene Yaw, R-Loyalsock, earlier this month, the Senate Agriculture Committee approved SB 298. The bill is designed to benefit farmers and landowners by eliminating the inconsistent interpretation of the state’s Clean and Green law.
“I am pleased this bill moved forward in the legislative process,” Yaw said. “While there were a few amendments added, I believe these changes will strengthen the overall concept of the original proposal.”
Yaw said the bill in its current form will accomplish several objectives. They include:
- further defining the term “agricultural use” as any land devoted to the development and operation of alternative energy system, if a majority of the energy generated is used on the tract in the production of an agricultural commodity or in activities performed on the farmstead land;
- and providing a preferential assessment for the leasing of land for the exploration of gas and oil, including the extraction of coal bed methane and other non coal surface mining requires the rollback of those taxes to occur after the production is started and only on the well site;
Yaw said he is unsure at this time when a vote may occur by the full Senate, but is hopeful that action will be taken soon.
“While amendments have been added, the original intent of the legislation remains the same and that is to enact a law that will provide county officials, across the state, with a consistent interpretation in which to follow, thereby avoiding differing opinions among the counties in the Commonwealth.
“I continue to keep this issue among my highest priorities,” the Loyalsock republican said.