LISBON - Two more road-maintenance agreements for areas where shale gas wells are expected to be drilled were approved this week by Columbiana County commissioners.
The latest road-use maintenance agreements, or RUMA, are with Chesapeake Exploration and are for:
- Center Township: 0.4 miles of Teegarden Road and 1.8 miles of Depot Road. These roads are used for access to a well site under development on the Mrugala property.
- Butler Township: 2.7 miles of Depot Road and 0.8 miles of Winona Road. The roads are used for access to a well site under development on the Huffman Trust property.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has yet to receive a permit application for either site, but the practice has been for companies to prepare the drilling sites before seeking a state permit. The permit process takes about 30 days.
The RUMA developed by the county engineer's office requires companies involved in the preparation and operation of well sites to upgrade and maintain roads being used and to resurface them when drilling is completed.
This brings to 29 the number of RUMAs the engineer's office has entered into for county and township roads. Three state routes in the county are covered by RUMAs entered into with the Ohio Department of Transportation.
There are currently 32 permitted wells at 31 locations in the county. The following are the locations by township: Butler, 4; Elkrun, 4; Fairfield, 2; Franklin, 2; Hanover, 6; Knox, 2; Madison, 2; Middleton, 4; Unity, 1; Washington, 2; and West, 2.