Penn State
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Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court

2013

  • In re Stake, 66 A.3d 817 (Pa. Cmwlth. May 14, 2013) (affirming trial court decision that a private access road across public property to a well pad did not constitute a public benefit sufficient to justify a taking).
  • Heavens v. Pennsylvania DEP, 65 A.3d 1069 (Pa. Cmwlth. Apr. 9, 2013) (affirming the DEP Office of Open Records determination that certain documents pertaining to a gas well accident were exempt from access under right to know laws).
  • MarkWest Liberty Midstream & Resources, LLC v. Clean Air Council, 2013 WL 2015635 (Pa. Cmwlth. Apr. 9, 2013) (vacating Environment Hearing Board determination of whether or not certain requested documents contained secrets because the EHB did not apply the “Crum” factors).
  • Moyer v. Gudknecht, 2013 WL 131096 (Pa. Cmwlth. Apr. 4, 2013) (affirming trial court denial of a mandamus action to assign a parcel subdivided by a deed separate PINs because the lots did not appear as separate on the county tax map and there was no recorded subdivision order).      
  • Pa. Envtl. Def. Found. v. Commonwealth, 2013 Pa. Commw. Unpub. LEXIS 67 (Pa. Cmwlth. Jan. 22, 2013) (overruling preliminary objections by the Commonwealth involving a constitutional challenge to Act 13 of 2012).

2012

  • Appeal of New Century Pipeline, 43 A.3d 544 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2012) (holding that a compressor station needed to move gas to a pipeline for sale was within the definition of “equipment necessary to drilling or producing gas”). 
  • Chesapeake Appalachia, LLC v. Golden, 35 A. 3d 1277 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Jan. 27, 2012) (affirming the trial court order requiring the Recorder of Deeds to record multiple lease assignments that are properly acknowledged and for which the appropriate statutory fee has been paid).
  • Com., Dept. of Envtl. Prot. v. Legere, 2012 WL 3079262 (Pa. Commw. Ct. July 31, 2012) (affirming the Office of Open Record’s order that the DEP must provide information under the Right to Know Law even if the records are not in the format requested).
  • PUC v. Gilbert, 40 A.3d 755 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Mar. 27, 2012) (concluding that investigations conducted by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission related to violations and pipeline incidents reported by pipeline operators are noncriminal investigations, and therefore are not subject to public disclosure under the Right to Know Law). 
  • Robinson Twp. v. Com., 2012 WL 3030277 (Pa. Commw. Ct. July 26, 2012) (declaring the zoning portion of Act 13 unconstitutional because it gives DEP the power to make legislative policy judgments and does not provide sufficient guidance when granting waivers).
  • Stephenson Group Natural Gas Co. v. Pa. Dep’t of Envtl. Prot., 2012 Pa. Commw. Unpub. LEXIS 240 (Pa. Commw. Apr. 4, 2012) (affirming the Office of Open Records conclusion that the requested documents were exempt from disclosure under the Right to Know Law in response to petitioner’s request for Civil Penalty Calculation worksheets).
  • In re: Township of Bradford Zoning Hearing Board, 2012 WL 1622495 (Pa. Commw. Ct. May 9, 2012) (holding that operating a compressor station was a necessary part of “gas production” and, therefore, permitted under the zoning ordinance).

2011

  • Allison, Inc. v. Unemployment Comp. Board of Review, 2011 WL 10857957 ( Pa. Cmwlth. Apr. 4, 2011) (affirming unemployment board’s order granting unemployment benefits for a truck driver for a natural gas company).
  • Bigler v. Clearfield County Tax Claim Bureau, 2011 WL 10857857 (Pa. Cmwlth. Aug. 4, 2011) (holding that the plaintiff had actual notice of private sale of a property and its mineral rights that were to be auctioned for failure to pay taxes). 
  • Int’l Dev. Corp. v. Davidge, 26 A.3d 1234 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Aug. 11, 2011) (affirming the trial court’s decision that the Board of Property had exclusive jurisdiction to decide ownership of mineral estates).
  • Kendzior v. Pa. Hous. Fin. Agency, 2011 Pa. Commw. Unpub. LEXIS 579 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Jul. 20, 2011) (affirming the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency’s denial of Homeowner's request for a loan because loan decisions cannot be based on speculative income from possible future gas royalties).

2010

  • Foundation Coal Resources Corp. v. Dept. of Environmental Protection, 993 A.2d 1277 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Apr. 27, 2010) (affirming that the Department of Environmental Protection did not abuse its discretion by issuing permits to a gas company without the special conditions requested by a coal company which owned a “projected and platted but not yet being operated” coal mine which would be traversed by the well shafts).
  • Penneco Oil Co., Inc. v. County of Fayette, 4 A.3d 722 (Pa. Commw. Ct. July 22, 2010) (finding county zoning ordinance is not preempted by Oil and Gas Act).
    • Agricultural Law Brief (Aug. 2010)
    • Subsequent History: Penneco Oil Co. v. County of Fayette, 2010 Pa. Commw. LEXIS 512 (Pa. Commw. Ct. Sept. 14, 2010) (denying petitions for reargument filed by Range Resources, Penneco Oil Company, and Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association).
    • Subsequent History: Penneco Oil Co. v. County of FayetteNo. 556 WAL 2010 and No. 553 WAL 2010 (Pa. Jan. 6, 2012) (denying petition for Allowance of Appeal filed by the County of Fayette and Cross Petition for Allowance of Appeal filed by Range Resources, Penneco Oil Company, and Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association).

2009

  • Arbor Resources, LLC v. Nockamixon Twp., 973 A.2d 1036 (Pa. Commw. Ct. May 12, 2009) (ruling that trial court could not address the question of Oil and Gas Act preemption where Zoning Hearing Board had original jurisdiction).
    • Prior History: Arbor Res. LLC v. Nockamixon Twp., No. 2008-4801-31-1 (Bucks Co. Ct. Com. Pl. Nov. 21, 2008).
    • Agricultural Law Brief (Oct. 2008)
  • Greenwood v. Susquehanna County Board of Assessment Appeals, 2009 WL 9097141 (Pa. Cmwlth. Feb. 23, 2009) (holding a trial court did not err in dismissing a member of the county board because he was involved with thirty five cases involving oil and gas leases which were currently being litigated).