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Corbett administration fires conservation official

January 18, 2012

HARRISBURG, PA — Kurt Leitholf, the longtime head of the Citizens Advisory Council that has oversight of the state’s parks and forests, was fired on January 13 by PA Governor Tom Corbett’s administration, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Some council members contend that the termination was illegal and may result in reduced public accountability of Marcellus Shale gas drilling in state forests.

Leitholf served as executive director of the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Citizens Advisory Council since 1996. The Council will meet at 10 a.m. on January 25 in Room 105 of the Rachel Carson State Office Building in Harrisburg. Approximately one-third of Pennsylvania’s 2.1 million acres of state land are already under lease.