Eastern OH Town Bans Fracking on Town-Owned Property

On Monday, Hinckley, Ohio trustees voted to ban the use of hydraulic fracturing on township-owned property.

Hydrologic fracking for oil and gas on township-owned property will now be prohibited with action taken by township trustees at the Nov. 21 trustee meeting…. In a unanimous vote, trustee approved a resolution prohibiting fracking on township-owned land saying that more research needs to be done because of the potential harmful impact of fracking for both environmental and health reasons.

Trustee Martha Catherwood introduced the resolution commenting that the township needed to take action "since fracking issues are running rampant in our part of the state." She said the township needs to take action "to protect the ground and valuable streams as well as drinking water for residents of the township."

The prohibition on fracking does not apply to private property owners and "the township doesn’t have any control over private property owners decision to sell or lease their land for fracking."*

When a resident attending the meeting asked Ms. Catherwood why the council was taking action now, she replied with a recitation of anti-drilling propaganda almost verbatim from the fictitious “documentary” Gasland.

Now, Ms. Catherwood has been appointed the person the Ohio Department of Natural Resources will contact when and if permits are filed for drilling on private land in the township:

Trustee Dave Sambor added that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ ability to monitor fracking sites "is very limited." He said that townships are asked to provide a contact person for ODNR to contact when property owners in a township or city take out a drilling permit. He said this at least makes the township aware where private drilling sites are. Trustees appointed trustee Catherwood to be the contact person for ODNR.*

*Eastern Medina Post (Nov 22, 2011) – Trustees ban fracking on township-owned property