November 1, 2014

Medina
Rain
39°F

Anti-fracking amendment goes to ballot in Youngstown

YOUNGSTOWN — The Youngstown City Council approved an anti-fracking amendment for the May 7 primary election ballot — even though there are doubts about whether it could be enforced.

The Vindicator newspaper reported that the Council on Wednesday night approved the charter amendment for the ballot. It would ban the gas drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in the city.

Law Director Anthony Farris said the Council had no choice but to move the proposal to the ballot after a group called Frack Free Mahoning Valley collected about 4,000 signatures calling for it. The group needs just 1,562 valid signatures to get the measure to the voters.

Because the state regulates gas drilling, city officials said the ban would probably be unenforceable, although members of the activist group disagree.