Brookfield trustees made a smart decision when they agreed to lease about 50 acres of land for oil and gas production. The township expects to receive $3,900 per acre.
Now it's imperative that the trustees not roll that money into the operating budget. Instead, it would be prudent to identify projects that could lure businesses or entice new residents. It would also be most beneficial to tackle the most pressing capital improvement necessities. One-time money should be spent on one-time expenses.
Many local governments have already seized on the oil- and gas-drilling boom. They are all wise. Unfortunately, many local governments signed away the lease rights many years ago, before anybody knew that the Utica Shale and hydraulic fracturing would create this opportunity.