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Gas well may be drilled near elementary school

September 9, 2013 News Extra

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PROSPECT — Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling may involve property at Moraine Elementary School.

Roger Leight, representing XTO Energy, told the Slippery Rock School Board on Monday night that XTO is proposing a gas well pad off Route 528 near the school and is looking to lease properties to be a part of the unit.

The unit would be 440 to 680 acres and would be served by four wells on the pad.

He said the school is on the edge of that unit, and the company is looking at leasing 1.33 acres of the school’s property to be included in it.

Leight said there would be no surface drilling on the school’s land.

He also said the company tests water supplies within 2,500 feet of wells, which would include the school, both before and after operations. He noted state law requires water testing within 1,000 feet of a well.

If there is a problem with well casing, he said the company is required by law to supply potable water.

Leight could not say how much income the drilling could generate for the district.

“We can’t tell until the well is drilled,” Leight said. “But it will be a small supplement.”

The next step, Leight said, is to talk with the district solicitor and then present a lease for a board vote.

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