Charter amendment for fracking being debated - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Charter amendment for fracking being debated

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - A charter amendment that received plenty of signatures to get on the ballot is being called a job-killing bill that takes away the rights of property owners.

However, supporters say it's better than a potentially people and nature killing industry.

Attorney Alan Wenger with Harrington, Hoppee and Mitchell, who negotiates leases for land owners with oil companies, says a vote for the Charter Amendment or Community Bill of Rights is not good for growth and jobs.

He says courts have ruled such legislation as uninforceable due to Ohio state laws. However, he believes businesses that don't want to become involved in a legal battle will go elsewhere.

Wenger says if that happens property owners will lose their mineral rights and the amendment, which calls for clean water and pure water and no toxins, could shut other businesses down. 

Members of Frack Free America and Frack Free Mahoning say no one is going after other businesses.

Supporters say damages due to fracking and the oil drilling process have the potential to damage the city and region. They say it also say that the state's ability to protect residents water and air were given away by state lawmakers years ago.

Lynn Anderson of Frack Free America adds that there is enough property at the former Idora Park to put a frack pad and drill for oil. She fears that will damage the beauty and water for everyone.

"Our county commissioners sold 11 million gallons of water, and all the trucks of chemicals, 856,000 gallons of chemicals, came up from Texas," says Anderson. "It is on Blott Road and it is in the protected drinking water area of the Meander Resovoir. That's our drinking water."

Both sides are encouraging everyone to read the ballot language and make an informed decision.

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