"I feel that's the heart of this bill: To guarantee to our people that we're doing all we can that's reasonably possible to assure there won't be contamination of our underground drinking water supply," he said.
Tomblin said he also has concerns with provisions in the draft bill that would require drilling companies to file disclosures with the Division of Labor, providing a breakdown of resident and out-of-state employees, including identifying hometowns and salary schedules for in-state versus out-of-state employees.
Tomblin said he's "100 percent supportive" of creating jobs for West Virginians, but said the proposed disclosure requirements would be unprecedented.
"As far as I know, that would be the only industry that would have to report where its employees come from," he said.
Manchin, meanwhile, said he doesn't understand why the industry is opposed to compiling jobs data, since they already have that information in personnel records.
"I'm concerned they're fighting it because they know how bad the numbers will look," he said.
Nonetheless, Manchin said there's still opportunity for the Legislature and Tomblin administration to reach consensus in time for a December special session.
"Anything's possible. I think the governor wants a bill, and reasonable people can differ," Manchin said.
Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 30-348-1220.