Allegheny County Council has approved a deal to allow natural gas drilling under Deer Lakes Park.
The vote wasn’t unanimous – and it certainly wasn’t pretty.
Any time you talk about hydraulic fracturing –
Or “fracking” –
People get pretty passionate.
Before Tuesday night’s marathon meeting –
Council had heard hours and hours of testimony.
That night they heard about five hours more.
So when the “yes” vote finally came early Wednesday morning –
The meeting ended amid shouting and swearing.
Still – council made the right decision.
Range Resources has leases with private landowners all around Deer Lakes Park.
It was going to drill whether it could extract gas from under the park or not.
No matter what –
Allegheny County will have to closely monitor the operations –
Watching for any environmental, health or other problems.
So it might as well benefit from it –
Especially since the cash will pay for improvements at Deer Lakes –
And other county parks.