It helps if state law recognizes that Home Rule, local land use control, applies to drilling. Most states, including the big oil states of Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and New Mexico recognize home rule. If it does, municipalities can then decide how badly they want to get fracked. Or not fracked at all. Which is the issue going to referendum in Colorado – which has now cleared its last legal challenge (from the frackers) to get on the ballot in November. Bravo ! (While you are voting, might get rid of that fracking shill, Gov. Hickenfracker.)
Colorado municipalities had the right to apply land use ordinances to drilling until the legislature removed those rights at the best of the oil and gas lobby. Those rights need to be restored either by the legislature or a referendum. New Yorkers are fighting that battle in court – applying zoning laws, not just anti-corporate rhetoric. http://www.utne.com/
environment/big-oil-vs-small- towns-new-york-fractivists- take-stand.aspx#ixzz32pYZ09hA
Legal council and organizers from the local control advocates in Colorado received notice today from the Colorado Supreme Court that ballot initiative # 75, the Right to Local Self Government, has cleared its final legal challenge, and is now headed toward signature gathering to place it onto the 2014 ballot. The ballot initiative, the first of its kind, succeeded in clearing all phases of State approval as well as two corporate legal challenges designed to keep the initiative from a democratic vote of Colorado citizens.
The ballot initiative asserts, that the power to enact local laws protecting the health, safety, and welfare of individuals, communities, and nature will not be subject to preemption by state agencies. Preemption by the state has been used by the Colorado Mining Association to overturn a five-county ban on the industrial use of cyanide in gold mining, and is currently being employed against the communities of Longmont, Lafayette, and Fort Collins in their efforts to protect their people and cities from the harmful effects of shale gas industrialization.
Local control advocates will now begin to print petitions and organize volunteer signature gatherers throughout the state. The current volunteer structure spans over 30 Colorado cities and will grow through statewide presentations and ongoing organizing efforts.
Home Rule advocates believes that the current legal framework favors corporations over communities and threatens the essence of democracy. Ballot initiative #75 addresses the inherent problems of corporate-centered law.
Local Control Colorado is one of the organizations advancing ballot measure #75, the Colorado Community Rights Amendment, and helping local communities use land use ordinances to address shale industrialization.