DENVER (AP) – Oil and gas drillers could be charged new fees to help local governments under a bill that passed the state House Friday.

The bill sets up a process for new fees on energy producers to assist cities and counties hiring staff to interact with the energy producers. The bill also opens the door for local governments to exert more oversight on drilling, such as environmental monitoring.

However, Democratic sponsors amended the bill to remove provisions most onerous to the oil and gas industry. The bill no longer allows local government to hire inspectors to augment state well inspectors.

The bill passed 39-24, with many Republicans arguing the oil and gas industry is overtaxed. The measure now heads to the Senate.

LINK: House Bill 1273

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