HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — An impact fee from drilling for natural gas in Pennsylvania generated $198 million in 2012, about the same it raised the prior year.
The figures released Thursday were announced a few days after the annual deadline for companies to pay the fee to the state.
The fee raised $204 million in its first year, and officials say the lower amount last year is largely attributable to falling natural gas prices.
The $198 million is an estimate, as producers can challenge their payment amounts.
The money is collected by the Public Utility Commission, which distributes it according to a system established by the law enacted in February 2012.
Much of the money goes to help with local effects of drilling, but some also goes to state agencies for other purposes.