Economic downturns drive migration, but the grim and woe in some upstate New York communities and what some citizens perceive as apathy in Albany are the flywheels which have driven serious conversation on the merits of seceding to nearby Pennsylvania.
The concept of secession has been advanced largely by cause of New York state’s ban on hydraulic fracturing. In December 2014, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a complete ban on the practice of fracking, citing environmental concerns and inflated economic projections. Reeling from the loss of casino licenses, the Southern Tier has been doubly hit with the fracking ban.
Although such talk of secession is inflated and not likely to beget a full-fledged exit to Pennsylvania, one community, Conklin, in Broome County, has its citizens encouraged enough to carefully examine the procedures for secession, researching tax issues and comparing the cost of business between states.
For those who are willing and able to see reality, Pennsylvania’s expansion of hydraulic fracking since 2002 has witnessed 24,000 jobs created in drilling alone, over 200,000 ancillary jobs created in trucking and construction, over four-billion dollars invested, and an average wage of $62,000 (industry related) a year according to the state’s Department of Labor and Industry.
The preeminent villain associated with New York’s ban on fracking: Environmental groups. Gov. Cuomo specifically cited environmental concerns when he imposed the ban on the practice.
If you can’t bring jobs to New York, communities in New York may go to the jobs in Pennsylvania.