130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. B. No. 537  As Introduced
As Introduced

129th General Assembly
Regular Session
2011-2012
H. B. No. 537


Representative Hagan, R. 

Cosponsors: Representatives Lundy, Foley, Fende, Antonio, Fedor, Yuko, Goyal 



A BILL
To amend sections 1509.02 and 1509.021 and to enact section 1509.39 of the Revised Code to authorize a political subdivision to enact and enforce health and safety standards for oil and gas drilling and exploration, and to revise the setback requirements in the Oil and Gas Law.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF OHIO:
Section 1. That sections 1509.02 and 1509.021 be amended and section 1509.39 of the Revised Code be enacted to read as follows:
Sec. 1509.02.  There is hereby created in the department of natural resources the division of oil and gas resources management, which shall be administered by the chief of the division of oil and gas resources management. The division has sole and exclusive authority to regulate the permitting, location, and spacing, installation, operation, maintenance, abandonment, plugging, and site restoration of, disposal of waste from, and all matters related to oil and gas wells and production operations within the state that are necessary to protect the health and safety of the public, property, and the environment, excepting only those activities regulated under federal laws for which oversight has been delegated to the environmental protection agency and activities regulated under sections 6111.02 to 6111.029 of the Revised Code. The regulation of oil and gas activities is a matter of general statewide interest that requires uniform statewide regulation, and this chapter and rules adopted under it constitute a comprehensive plan with respect to all aspects of the locating, drilling, well stimulation, completing, and operating of oil and gas wells within this state, including site construction and restoration, permitting related to those activities, and the disposal of wastes from those wells. Nothing in this section affects the authority granted to the director of transportation and local authorities in section 723.01 or 4513.34 of the Revised Code, provided that the authority granted under those sections shall not be exercised in a manner that discriminates against, unfairly impedes, or obstructs oil and gas activities and operations regulated under this chapter.
The chief shall not hold any other public office, nor shall the chief be engaged in any occupation or business that might interfere with or be inconsistent with the duties as chief.
All moneys collected by the chief pursuant to sections 1509.06, 1509.061, 1509.062, 1509.071, 1509.13, 1509.22, 1509.221, 1509.222, 1509.34, and 1509.50 of the Revised Code, ninety per cent of moneys received by the treasurer of state from the tax levied in divisions (A)(5) and (6) of section 5749.02 of the Revised Code, all civil penalties paid under section 1509.33 of the Revised Code, and, notwithstanding any section of the Revised Code relating to the distribution or crediting of fines for violations of the Revised Code, all fines imposed under divisions (A) and (B) of section 1509.99 of the Revised Code and fines imposed under divisions (C) and (D) of section 1509.99 of the Revised Code for all violations prosecuted by the attorney general and for violations prosecuted by prosecuting attorneys that do not involve the transportation of brine by vehicle shall be deposited into the state treasury to the credit of the oil and gas well fund, which is hereby created. Fines imposed under divisions (C) and (D) of section 1509.99 of the Revised Code for violations prosecuted by prosecuting attorneys that involve the transportation of brine by vehicle and penalties associated with a compliance agreement entered into pursuant to this chapter shall be paid to the county treasury of the county where the violation occurred.
The fund shall be used solely and exclusively for the purposes enumerated in division (B) of section 1509.071 of the Revised Code, for the expenses of the division associated with the administration of this chapter and Chapter 1571. of the Revised Code and rules adopted under them, and for expenses that are critical and necessary for the protection of human health and safety and the environment related to oil and gas production in this state. The expenses of the division in excess of the moneys available in the fund shall be paid from general revenue fund appropriations to the department.
Sec. 1509.021. On and after June 30, 2010 the effective date of this amendment, all of the following apply:
(A) The surface location of a new well or a tank battery of a well shall not be within one hundred fifty thousand feet of an occupied dwelling that is located in an urbanized area unless the owner of the land on which the occupied dwelling is located consents in writing to the surface location of the well or tank battery of a well less than one hundred fifty thousand feet from the occupied dwelling and the chief of the division of oil and gas resources management approves the written consent of that owner. However, the chief shall not approve the written consent of such an owner when the surface location of a new well or a tank battery of a well will be within one hundred feet of an occupied dwelling that is located in an urbanized area.
(B) The surface location of a new well shall not be within one hundred fifty thousand feet from the property line of a parcel of land that is not in the drilling unit of the well if the parcel of land is located in an urbanized area and directional drilling will be used to drill the new well unless the owner of the parcel of land consents in writing to the surface location of the well less than one hundred fifty thousand feet from the property line of the parcel of land and the chief approves the written consent of that owner. However, the chief shall not approve the written consent of such an owner when the surface location of a new well will be less than one hundred feet from the property line of the owner's parcel of land that is not in the drilling unit of the well if the parcel of land is located in an urbanized area and directional drilling will be used.
(C) The surface location of a new well shall not be within two hundred one thousand feet of an occupied dwelling that is located in an urbanized area and that is located on land that has become part of the drilling unit of the well pursuant to a mandatory pooling order issued under section 1509.27 of the Revised Code unless the owner of the land on which the occupied dwelling is located consents in writing to the surface location of the well at a distance that is less than two hundred one thousand feet from the occupied dwelling. However, if the owner of the land on which the occupied dwelling is located provides such written consent, the surface location of the well shall not be within one hundred feet of the occupied dwelling.
If an applicant cannot identify an owner of land or if an owner of land is not responsive to attempts by the applicant to contact the owner, the applicant may submit an affidavit to the chief attesting to such an unidentifiable owner or to such unresponsiveness of an owner and attempts by the applicant to contact the owner and include a written request to reduce the distance of the location of the well from the occupied dwelling to less than two hundred one thousand feet. If the chief receives such an affidavit and written request, the chief shall reduce the distance of the location of the well from the occupied dwelling to a distance of not less than one hundred feet.
(D) Except as otherwise provided in division (L) of this section, the surface location of a new well shall not be within one hundred fifty thousand feet of the property line of a parcel of land that is located in an urbanized area and that has become part of the drilling unit of the well pursuant to a mandatory pooling order issued under section 1509.27 of the Revised Code unless the owner of the land consents in writing to the surface location of the well at a distance that is less than one hundred fifty thousand feet from the owner's property line. However, if the owner of the land provides such written consent, the surface location of the well shall not be within seventy-five feet of the property line of the owner's parcel of land.
If an applicant cannot identify an owner of land or if an owner of land is not responsive to attempts by the applicant to contact the owner, the applicant may submit an affidavit to the chief attesting to such an unidentifiable owner or to such unresponsiveness of an owner and attempts by the applicant to contact the owner and include a written request to reduce the distance of the location of the well from the property line of the owner's parcel of land to less than one hundred fifty thousand feet. If the chief receives such an affidavit and written request, the chief shall reduce the distance of the location of the well from the property line to a distance of not less than seventy-five feet.
(E) The surface location of a new tank battery of a well shall not be within one hundred fifty thousand feet of an occupied dwelling that is located in an urbanized area and that is located on land that has become part of the drilling unit of the well pursuant to a mandatory pooling order issued under section 1509.27 of the Revised Code unless the owner of the land on which the occupied dwelling is located consents in writing to the location of the tank battery at a distance that is less than one hundred fifty thousand feet from the occupied dwelling. However, if the owner of the land on which the occupied dwelling is located provides such written consent, the location of the tank battery shall not be within one hundred feet of the occupied dwelling.
If an applicant cannot identify an owner of land or if an owner of land is not responsive to attempts by the applicant to contact the owner, the applicant may submit an affidavit to the chief attesting to such an unidentifiable owner or to such unresponsiveness of an owner and attempts by the applicant to contact the owner and include a written request to reduce the distance of the location of the tank battery from the occupied dwelling to less than one hundred fifty thousand feet. If the chief receives such an affidavit and written request, the chief shall reduce the distance of the location of the tank battery from the occupied dwelling to a distance of not less than one hundred feet.
(F) Except as otherwise provided in division (L) of this section, the location of a new tank battery of a well shall not be within seventy-five one thousand feet of the property line of a parcel of land that is located in an urbanized area and that has become part of the drilling unit of the well pursuant to a mandatory pooling order issued under section 1509.27 of the Revised Code unless the owner of the land consents in writing to the location of the tank battery at a distance that is less than seventy-five one thousand feet from the owner's property line. However, if the owner of the land provides such written consent, the location of the tank battery shall not be within the property line of the owner's parcel of land.
If an applicant cannot identify an owner of land or if an owner of land is not responsive to attempts by the applicant to contact the owner, the applicant may submit an affidavit to the chief attesting to such an unidentifiable owner or to such unresponsiveness of an owner and attempts by the applicant to contact the owner and include a written request to reduce the distance of the location of the tank battery from the property line of the owner's parcel of land to less than seventy-five one thousand feet. If the chief receives such an affidavit and written request, the chief shall reduce the distance of the location of the tank battery from the property line, provided that the tank battery shall not be within the property line of the owner's parcel of land.
(G) For purposes of divisions (C) to (F) of this section, written consent of an owner of land may be provided by any of the following:
(1) A copy of an original lease agreement as recorded in the office of the county recorder of the county in which the occupied dwelling or property is located that expressly provides for the reduction of the distance of the location of a well or a tank battery, as applicable, from an occupied dwelling or a property line;
(2) A copy of a deed severing the oil or gas mineral rights, as applicable, from the owner's parcel of land as recorded in the office of the county recorder of the county in which the property is located that expressly provides for the reduction of the distance of the location of a well or a tank battery, as applicable, from an occupied dwelling or a property line;
(3) A written statement that consents to the proposed location of a well or a tank battery, as applicable, and that is approved by the chief. For purposes of division (G)(3) of this section, an applicant shall submit a copy of a written statement to the chief.
(H) For areas that are not urbanized areas, the surface location of a new well shall not be within one hundred thousand feet of an occupied private dwelling or of a public building that may be used as a place of assembly, education, entertainment, lodging, trade, manufacture, repair, storage, or occupancy by the public. This division does not apply to a building or other structure that is incidental to agricultural use of the land on which the building or other structure is located unless the building or other structure is used as an occupied private dwelling or for retail trade.
(I) The surface location of a new well shall not be within one hundred thousand feet of any other well. However, an applicant may submit a written statement to request the chief to authorize a new well to be located at a distance that is less than one hundred thousand feet from another well. If the chief receives such a written statement, the chief may authorize a new well to be located within one hundred feet of another well if the chief determines that the applicant satisfactorily has demonstrated that the location of the new well at a distance that is less than one hundred thousand feet from another well is necessary to reduce impacts to the owner of the land on which the well is to be located or to the surface of the land on which the well is to be located.
(J) For areas that are not urbanized areas, the location of a new tank battery of a well shall not be within one hundred thousand feet of an existing inhabited structure.
(K) The location of a new tank battery of a well shall not be within fifty one thousand feet of any other well.
(L) The location of a new well or a new tank battery of a well shall not be within fifty one thousand feet of a stream, river, watercourse, water well, pond, lake, or other body of water. However, the chief may authorize a new well or a new tank battery of a well to be located at a distance that is less than fifty one thousand feet from a stream, river, watercourse, water well, pond, lake, or other body of water if the chief determines that the reduction in the distance is necessary to reduce impacts to the owner of the land on which the well or tank battery of a well is to be located or to protect public safety or the environment.
(M) The surface location of a new well or a new tank battery of a well shall not be within fifty one thousand feet of a railroad track or of the traveled portion of a public street, road, or highway. This division applies regardless of whether the public street, road, or highway has become part of the drilling unit of the well pursuant to a mandatory pooling order issued under section 1509.27 of the Revised Code.
(N) A new oil tank shall not be within three feet of another oil tank.
(O) The surface location of a mechanical separator shall not be within any of the following:
(1) Fifty feet of a well;
(2) Ten feet of an oil tank;
(3) One hundred thousand feet of an existing inhabited structure.
(P) A vessel that is equipped in such a manner that the contents of the vessel may be heated shall not be within any of the following:
(1) Fifty feet of an oil production tank;
(2) Fifty feet of a well;
(3) One hundred thousand feet of an existing inhabited structure;
(4) If the contents of the vessel are heated by a direct fire heater, fifty feet of a mechanical separator.
Sec. 1509.39. This chapter and rules adopted under it shall not be construed to prevent a municipal corporation, county, or township from enacting and enforcing health and safety standards for the drilling and exploration for oil and gas, provided that those standards are not less restrictive than this chapter and rules adopted under it. A county or township shall not adopt or enforce any ordinances, resolutions, rules, or requirements relative to the minimum acreage requirements for drilling units; minimum distances from which a new well or related production facilities may be drilled or an existing well deepened, plugged back, or reopened to a source of supply different from the existing pool from boundaries of tracts, drilling units, or other facilities or features specified in section 1509.021 or 1509.23 of the Revised Code; or the restoration or plugging of an oil or gas well. A county or township shall not require any permit or license for the drilling, operation, production, plugging, or abandonment of any oil or gas well or any fee, bond, other security, or insurance for any activity associated with the drilling, operation, production, plugging, or abandonment of a well, except for the permit provided for in section 4513.34 of the Revised Code and any bond or other security associated with it.
Section 2. That existing sections 1509.02 and 1509.021 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.
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