Or how to shake down some gullible landowners into paying some lawyers to pretend like they have a lawsuit. The New York Joint Landowners Coalition of New York – JLCNY ( a Koch Sock Puppet front group) has issued yet another summary about their proposed lawsuit against the state of New York – wherein they must prove at trial that “the state has deprived them of all economic use of their property.” Simply because the state regulators are still in the process of reviewing the proposed regulations for one type of oil and gas well – which has never been drilled in the state, and which has proven problematic elsewhere – namely high water volume hydraulically fractured horizontal wells, (HVHF).
Good fracking luck with that. For a couple of three obvious reasons:
1. They have no plaintiff – no aggrieved party. There is no such thing as a “class action takings” since the facts of each owner are different – and are essential to proving a takings.
2. They have no case – no specific example of how any property owner has been derived of all economic interest in their entire property when only one type of well is under temporary review – and that type of well only applies to one type of sedimentary layer – tight sands.
3. They don’t own it until it is extracted – New York is a ‘non-ownership’ state regarding subterranean gas and oil, meaning that the landowner does not own the gas and/or oil until it has been extracted and taken into possession of the landowner. Other states differ, but it’s pretty clear that New York falls into the ‘non-ownership’ category, which would make a “taking” prior to extraction a dead letter in court.
4. It ain’t there anyway – how do you prove monetary damages on gas that isn’t there anyway in most of Upstate ? And how do they know what it is supposed to be worth ?
They do have a lawyer. Several lawyers. That’s a start, right ? Including the lawyer that is slated to argue the Home Rule case in front of the New York Supremes and an “eminent domain” lawyer – but not a “takings” specialist. That actually understands how a takings claim works:
What they have here is a publicity stunt. Not a lawsuit.
So they crank out press releases to soak the landowners of funds. Here’s the latest:
Dear Friends and Natural Gas Supporters,
While the JLCNY is aggressively pursuing its lawsuit against the state for a Defacto (sic) Takings, there are many people who are still not quite sure what the law suit is all about. To help clear up any confusion, the attached fact sheet has been created. Please review it and let us know if there are any further questions or concerns regarding the lawsuit.
In the mean time please consider making a donation to support the lawsuit yourself. We need all the financial assistance possible and any amount you can donate will be greatly appreciated.
Dan Fitzsimmons, President
Joint Landowners Coalition of New York, Inc.”
All this by way of coining a new term for the Fracking Lexicon : Shale Shyster