Last Monday, the Manhattan Institute and its Empire Center for New York State Policy released a report which finds that there are significant potential economic gains if the state allows for natural gas exploration in the Upstate Marcellus Shale region.

As readers of Unshackle Upstate Update know, New York State had a moratorium on high volume hydraulic fracturing in place since it began its environmental review in 2008.

The report shows the tremendous economic growth that fracking has brought to Pennsylvania, where some 5,000 wells have been hydrofractured in the last decade.

It is not a surprise to us that the report finds that Pennsylvania counties with hydrofractured gas wells have performed better across economic indicators than those that have no wells, and that between 2007 and 2011, per-capita income rose by 19 percent in Pennsylvania counties with more than 200 wells, and by 12 percent in counties with fewer than 20 wells.

Maybe this will be the month that Gov. Cuomo allows fracking to begin in New York…