HARRISBURG -- Landowners in Bradford County say they can no longer afford to wait around for gas companies to pay them their royalties.
Busloads of gas lease holders traveled to Harrisburg Tuesday. They believe the only way to get the money they were promised is to stand together and make some noise.
"I got to make my voice heard," said Jim Gore. "I've talked and talked at home and let's go to Harrisburg and shake things up."
Jim Gore from Bradford County is one of hundreds of landowners in the northern tier who have signed agreements to allow gas companies to drill on their land. Now they want their money.
"Here's the message: we are watching, we are watching."
A group of more than 100 made the trip to the state capitol in Harrisburg in hopes of persuading lawmakers to pass House Bill 1391.
The bill would require natural gas drillers to pay leaseholders at least the standard industry royalty payments of 12.5 percent, with no deductions.
"Finally address what is a guarantee minimum royalty and what are landowners supposed to receive for the materials being taken from their property," said Bradford County Commissioner Daryl Miller.
Virginia Davis from Troy has actually been billed by Chesapeake, the company that is extracting gas from her land.
"Our lease says they can't do what they are doing. That's why everybody is angry about it," said Davis.
"Why would anyone want to be involved with someone removing minerals from their property and end up getting a bill instead? It's ludicrous," said Commissioner Miller.
Some who came have been charged tens of thousands of dollars and if this bill goes through, it would help them, and also help it from happening to others in the future.
"If I busted my contract they would have me in jail," said Davis. "This company owes 150,000 farmers money."
A decision on the bill is expected Wednesday in Harrisburg.