Lawmakers Reach Deal on "Fracking"

Mar 15, 2013

Illinois legislators say they've reached a deal on the taxes and fees companies that use hydraulic fracturing must pay the state. It was the last major stumbling block of an agreement on how to regulate the oil and gas drilling technique known as fracking.

Credit U.S. Dept. of Energy/NETL

Mark Denzler, who represents business groups that favor fracking, says the amount of money Illinois will make depends on how productive the wells are.

"You could see at 200 barrels a day, you could see upwards of about $200,000 per well, per year." -Mark Denzler

Drillers would also pay $15,000 per well to the Department of Natural Resources, which would enforce state laws on fracking. Although environmental groups negotiated the regulations, they say they'd rather see fracking banned altogether.

EPA: More information on Hydraulic Fracturing

U.S. Dept. of Energy: Hydraulic Fracturing Technology

That has prompted other environmentalists to accuse those advocates of selling out.

But they say given that the process is largely unregulated now, some rules are better than none.

Illinois Public Radio's Brian Mackey contributed to this report.