Court Orders Anti-Fracking Issue Back on Youngstown Ballot

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that an anti-fracking measure in Youngstown must be put back on fall ballots.

The court agreed with the city that the Mahoning County Board of Elections lacked the authority not to certify the anti-fracking “Community Bill of Rights.”

The election board had said it largely based its decision on a Feb. 17 Supreme Court decision that the Ohio Constitution’s home-rule amendment doesn’t grant local governments the power to regulate oil-and-gas operations in their limits.

FrackFree Mahoning Valley has placed the same proposal on Youngstown’s ballot twice in both 2013 and 2014. It failed all four times.

Similar charter amendments proposed in three other Ohio counties this fall were decertified in a separate decision by the state elections chief.