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Government and Politics

Local residents' vote may put them at odds with the state
90 gas wells have been drilled within the city limits of Broadview Heights
This story is part of a special series.

Tim Rudell

Taking back local control was on the minds of voters in Broadview Heights last night.  By about two-to-one they approved amending the city charter to ban further oil & gas drilling in the city.  WKSU’s Tim Rudell reports.

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In 2004 the Ohio legislature stripped local governments of authority over oil and gas well “permitting, installation, and regulatory enforcement.”  Since, Broadview Heights, sitting atop gas deposits in southern Cuyahoga County, has had 90 wells drilled in the city.  

Many residents want no more; and a majority approved a November 6th ballot issue amending the city charter to ban future drilling.  What now, with state law up against home rule?  Tish O’Dell led the drive to get the charter issue to a vote…“We would like city government, because it’s now part of our charter, to tell the drillers no, you can’t do this.  But, of course, I don’t know what our city officials will do.  If they don’t, then we will have to take action, probably legal action.  If they do do that, the drillers could possibly take legal action.  So, ether way it will probably end up in a court somewhere.”

Residents of half a dozen communities from Mansfield to the Youngstown area are considering ballot issues about oil & gas development. 


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