Sat October 27, 2012

Money Pours In Against Proposed Fracking Ban In Longmont

Two groups fighting a ballot measure that would ban hydraulic fracturing in Longmont have now raised more than a half million dollars compared to just under $25,000 that’s been raised by groups supporting  the initiative. 

KUNC's Kirk Seigler reports on the initiative as money pours in.

The latest figures come from campaign finance reports submitted to the Longmont city clerk’s office

Two oil and gas industry-backed groups Main Street Longmont and Longmont Taxpayers for Common Sense have raised a combined total of more than $500,000  and they’ve spent about half of it on advertising to fight Initiative 300. 

The oil and gas industry hasn’t hid its contempt for the proposed measure which would ban fracking completely from within Longmont’s city limits.  They say its passage would violate private property rights preventing lease holders from developing their mineral rights that lie beneath the city. 

But the initiative’s backers, Our Longmont, say they’re only trying to mitigate the public health and environmental concerns associated with a heavy industrial practice in an urban area. 

Longmont has become the flashpoint in a larger debate over drilling in populated areas along the northern Front Range.  The city itself has been sued by the state after it passed new regulations banning drilling from within residential areas.