IDNR releases proposed fracking rules to legislative committee

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SPRINGFIELD - Illinois Department of Natural Resources officials have released proposed rules for hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," to a legislative committee.

Officials released the long-awaited rules to the Illinois Legislature's Joint Committee on Administrative Rules on Friday.  IDNR faced increasing criticism from supporters of "fracking," who had hoped that drilling permits would be issued this summer. 

However, a draft of the proposed rules released by the department last year came under heavy criticism from environmentalists.

According to industry officials, southern Illinois has rich deposits of natural gas, and that high-volume oil and gas drilling could bring an economic boost to Illinois.

The legislative panel will have 45 days to approve, reject, or change the proposed rules.  If no action is taken, the rules can take effect.
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