Fracking Deal Back On Track

May 15, 2013

After several stumbles, an agreement  has been reached on how to regulate "fracking" in Illinois.  A House committee could vote on the package Thursday morning.  

Environmentalists who oppose any form of high-volume hydraulic fracturing in Illinois protest at the Capitol in March.
Credit Amanda Vinicky

  The oil and natural gas extraction technique known as hydraulic fracturing has been a boon for job creation in places like  North Dakota and Pennsylvania.

State legislators want the same in Illinois.

As do oil and gas drillers looking to make a handsome profit.

A coalition of supporters - including certain environmentalists wanting to get the strictest air and water-supply protections as possible - reached an agreement in March.  Only for the deal to dissolve.

But now the coalition says it's resolved those issues.

Tom Wolf heads the Illinois Chamber of Commerce Energy Council.

WOLF: "And at the end of the day I think we've found what I would call the regulatory sweet spot."

The latest deal gives oil and gas drilling companies tax credits for hiring Illinois residents.

It also addresses environmentalists’ fears that certain forms of hydraulic fracturing might not have been covered by the new rules.