royalties http://michiganradio.org en Oil & Gas Royalties for Parks - or Roads? http://michiganradio.org/post/oil-gas-royalties-parks-or-roads <p>At the moment, all royalties from oil and gas development in Michigan go into something called the <a href="http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-10366_37984_37985-124961--,00.html">Natural Resources Trust Fund</a>. The trust fund money is used for improving wildlife habitat and parks and it's used to buy land for conservation.</p><p>But at a time when pretty much everything’s up on the chopping block... the future of that trust fund is in question.</p><p>State Representative Dave Agema (R) from Grandville has introduced legislation to divert oil and gas royalties away from the Trust Fund.</p><p>Under his proposal:</p><ul><li>60% of oil and gas royalties would go into the State Transportation Fund</li><li>20% would go into the State Aeronautics Fund</li><li>the remaining 20% would go into the Natural Resources Trust Fund</li></ul><p>The NRTF has been around since 1976. It was negotiated as part of a larger deal to allow oil and gas development in Michigan's Pigeon River Country State Forest.</p><p><a href="http://environmentreport.org/show.php?showID=503">I talked with the Michigan Environmental Council's policy director</a>, James Clift, about this.&nbsp; He says:</p><blockquote><p>"Every corner of the state has obtained some of this trust fund money, either buying parkland or developing parkland, setting aside public land for hunting and fishing... It’s a very popular program and I think people are going to be very supportive of the way it’s spent currently."</p></blockquote><p> Thu, 03 Feb 2011 16:00:50 +0000 Rebecca Williams 1150 at http://michiganradio.org Oil & Gas Royalties for Parks - or Roads?