By David King

In 2008, companies with a stake in natural gas drilling in New York spent a little less than $400,000 on lobbying. In 2009, that number tripled, with groups like the Independent Oil and Gas Association and Chesapeake Energy spending over $1,200,000. Lobbying dollars from the same sources only increased in 2010, hitting nearly $1,600,000.

What sparked that rise? Although most groups and companies spending that kind of money on lobbying have a myriad of issues before the state legislature, this spending spiked as the debate about the safety of hydraulic fracturing grew increasingly heated.

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