Heather Briccetti, president and CEO of The Business Council, told energy and chemical industry leaders that “the antis have told a story that scares people, who are not hearing about the economic benefits” of natural gas hydrofracking. She was the keynote speaker at a forum hosted by the American Chemistry Council in Albany Tuesday.
In an op-ed which appears in the Daily News today, Ed Rendell, the former governor of Pennsylvania, writes that Governor Cuomo must, well, the headline already says it. The Business Council strongly supports safe and responsible natural gas development in New York. Rendell agrees. He cites the economic windfall it has brought to his state.
We go to Pittsburgh for this story about a new initiative that sets standards for drilling. What’s interesting is who was involved in the negotiations; “odd bedfellows,” reported Erich Schwartzel and Don Hopey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Perhaps New York, which has been “studying” natural gas development for four years, could learn something.
Reuters have come out with a report that says Jerry Brown, governor of California and a noted environmentalist, is recommending that his state consider hydrofracking to take advantage of its shale reserves. Of course, New York has been looking at the issue for four years now. The Business Council supports environmentally safe natural gas development in the state.
In this morning’s Times Union, Casey Seiler breaks down the Assembly’s passage of a bill banning hydrofracking until May 2015, a move The Business Council strongly opposes. “There are very few opportunities available with the same job creating potential as the exploration and development of shale gas, Heather Briccetti, president & CEO of The Business Council said in a statement released last night. “Actions like today’s vote hinder constructive dialogue that will provide a pathway to the safe and sustainable development of shale gas which can help to transform New York’s economy.”
Governor Cuomo dismisses talk that he was going to move forward with test wells but changed his mind
The Associated Press reports that Governor Cuomo says he wasn’t going to OK hyrdofracking before a conversation with former brother-in-law Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., the environmental activist. The Associated Press reported over the weekend that Kennedy and two officials familiar with Cuomo’s thinking nearly a month ago said Cuomo had come closer than ever to deciding to approve limited test wells, although Cuomo hadn’t made the decision.
Assembly Ways and Means may vote this week on creating a band on natural gas development in the Marcellus and Utica shale formations until May, 2014 and to increase the minimum wage.
As the rest of the nation looks for new opportunities to create jobs and lower America’s dependence on foreign sources of energy, The New York State Assembly appears on the verge of pushing legislation that creates a moratorium natural gas development. This legislation would further hamper New York ability to benefit from safely using our natural resources to enhance the state’s economy.
After four years of extensive study, research and hearings, the state should now move forward with safe and responsible shale gas development. The State must bring to a close its review and allow the people of New York to directly benefit from America’s new energy future. We must not allow the Assembly to put fear before science.
The Business Council also strongly urges the Assembly to vote against a hike in the minimum wage.
“We need to improve New York’s economy and create good-paying private sector jobs. Raising the minimum wage will not do that. It would increase the cost of doing business for affected employers. If the state were to increase the minimum wage to $8.75 as Governor Cuomo suggests, it would add an additional direct cost of nearly $3000 for each full-time minimum wage employee, plus indirect costs caused by ‘wage compression,’ as wages are adjusted for higher earning employees. Under Speaker Silver’s plan, this cost would increase to more than $4,000 for each full-time minimum wage employee.
To meet these costs, employers will have to eliminate jobs or reduce workers’ hours, raise prices, defer investments or reduce profits – none of which promotes economic growth. Cost increases will reduce the number of entry level jobs for persons with the least skill and experience, whom the proponents of a higher minimum wage purport to help.
Raising the minimum wage will impact retailers, tourism, small businesses, farms and not-for-profits and reduce job opportunities.
Imposing new costs on employers through wage mandates, leave mandates, health insurance coverage mandates or by other means, are contrary to the New York’s goals of promoting new investment and new jobs.”
Heather Briccetti, president and CEO of The Business Council of New York State, Inc.
The Business Council has released a new bill memo opposing a moratorium on natural gas development. That bill, A.5424A (Sweeney), contains a moratorium on natural gas extraction in low permeability natural gas pools until May 15, 2015, and requires the development of a skewed health impact study.
The study proposed by this legislation will not provide a fair and balanced review of the positive and negative public health impacts of extraction of natural gas using horizontal drilling and high-volume hydraulic fracturing. As outlined by the legislation, no efforts will be made to review the positive health effects associated with domestic natural gas extraction.