U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson, a Republican from Ohio's 6th District, has introduced a bill -- the Providing Opportunities with Energy Revenues in Counties Act -- designed to compensate counties that contain federal lands leased for oil and natural gas operations. Johnson said in a release that the federal government and some states receive revenue from royalties and permit fees from companies that develop oil and gas wells on federally owned land such as the Wayne National Forest in southeast Ohio. "My legislation," he said, "calls for 20% of this revenue to be redirected back to the counties where those federal lands are located [and] the funding can be used to support education initiatives and infrastructure improvements."

by Matt Warnock

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