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Anti-fracking bill returning to ballot in Youngstown

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - On May 6th, voters in Youngstown will have to decide whether or not to adopt a "Community Bill of Rights".

The bill would be a charter amendment related specifically to the oil and gas industry, a ballot initiative to ban fracking in the city.

Susie Beiersdorfer, with Frack Free Mahoning Valley, believes the recent earthquakes in Poland give their cause momentum going into this election.

"We've always felt that we have been pro-active, trying to get out ahead of the risks to public health and safety. But again, each time we've put this on the ballot, there's more evidence that shows that this cannot be done safely, or justly. With the technology as it stands now, and it certainly should not be done in an urban environment," said Beiersdorfer.

But, those opposed to the Community Bill of Rights said it's been defeated at the polls several times before for a reason. It is not good for business.

"My largest concern with this charter amendment, and we've talked about it at other events, is what I consider is the job killing initiative that it actually is. It might not be job killing today or tomorrow, but over the next couple of years, or five to 10 or 20 to 30 years. I think they'll be repercussions if this entire charter amendment is approved by voters on May 6th," said John McNally, mayor of Youngstown.

While opponents argue the charter amendment has no teeth because the state is the enforcement arm, proponents argue that's a cop out, and said the people who live here have a right to speak out about anything that could impact their quality of life.

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