A leading Texas economist says the proposed hydraulic fracturing ban in Denton would cost the city and the state of Texas hundreds of millions of dollars in lost gross product. The economic study by The Perryman Group of Waco analyzed the effects on the economy and tax revenue to local entities and the state if hydraulic fracturing was banned in Denton.
“The economic impact of a hydraulic fracturing ban in the city of Denton would be extremely detrimental,” said Texas economist Ray Perryman in a press release. The Perryman Group just completed the study for the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce. Denton city staff expect Tuesday evening’s public hearing on the measure to draw a huge crowd to city hall. “Over the next the 10 years, a hydraulic fracturing ban in the City of Denton would negatively impact the city of Denton’s local economy by $251.4 million in lost gross product; 2,077 lost person-years of employment; and put a severe financial strain on the city and its taxpayers from millions of dollars in lost oil and gas related revenue,” Perryman said.
A Colorado-based group has been circulating a competing petition in support of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The head of the agency that regulates the oil and gas industry in Texas wrote Denton city officials last week asking them to withhold their support for the petition. Outgoing Railroad Commission Chairman Barry Smitherman likened it to a “ban on drilling” that could injure the state’s economy. The Perryman study will be formally presented to the Denton City Council July 15 during at its public hearing on the proposed hydraulic fracturing ban. Less than 1,600 registered voters in the city of Denton have petitioned to have the Council either adopt a “hydraulic fracturing ban” or place the measure for voter consideration on the November 4, 2014 ballot. Even if the council rejects the ban, Denton residents could vote on it in November.- Robert Francis, The Associated Press