Rio Blanco County approves fees for oil and gas wells |

Rio Blanco County approves fees for oil and gas wells

MEEKER, Colorado (AP) ” Rio Blanco County has approved fees on new development to help keep up with the impacts of growth fueled by expanding natural gas drilling.

The fees approved earlier this week by the county commissioners include charges ranging from about $10,000 to nearly $18,000 per oil and gas well, depending on how deep the well is.

Fees will also be assessed on new homes, multiunit dwellings, commercial and industrial buildings.

Other Colorado counties and communities have assessments designed to offset the impacts of new development, but the per-well fee is believed to be unique.

Rio Blanco County in northwest Colorado has 2,600 natural gas wells and is bracing for as many as 19,000 more over the next 15 years. Its population could triple, and infrastructure expenses could reach $343 million.

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