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Range Resources Files Suit Over Cecil Ordinance

Township Manager Don Gennuso called the move 'unfortunate.'

Southpointe-based Range Resources has sued over its recently approved conditional-use ordinance governing Marcellus Shale drilling.

Township manager Don Gennuso said he had not yet been served with the paperwork but he confirmed Wednesday that the company had filed suit, claiming Cecil had not properly advertised its meetings, among other concerns.

"It's unfortunate that Range—a corporation in our town—would sue us, especially when we involved them in the process," he said.

After several public hearings, the board of supervisors last month changed its ordinance, making Marcellus Shale drilling a conditional rather than permitted use.

Gennuso said the supervisors stand by the ordinance because it "followed all applicable rules."

Range Resources Matt Pitzarella gave the following statement:

"It’s always our desire to work with municipalities and local governments. However, when going through the ordinance-adoption process a municipality is required to provide public notice of hearings and amendments or changes to the ordinance to both the public and also county planning agencies and Cecil did none of these things," he said. "They also did not share a copy with the county before adopting the changes, in turn preventing impacting residents, individuals or county officials from commenting. In the end, these are measures that will only add costs to local taxpayers, which is unfortunate. Other states like neighboring Ohio have strong baseline rules and regulations that are consistent across the state."

Melissa Kessler October 13, 2011 at 12:24 PM
I believe that if the statement from Range Resources holds any merit that they have every right to sue the township. In my opinion this all boils down to money, and the township wants to hold the cards as far as who and where and when anyone gets to drill for marcellus shale in the township. It won't be long before there is so much regulation and red tape that these companies, who employ hundreds of local men and women, will not be able to have their business survive in the area.
suzanne kennedy October 13, 2011 at 01:15 PM
I live in PT. We have cunrrently have a strict conditional use ordinance. We also have a proposed home rule charter amendment facing PT voters. The amendment bans drilling in PT, removes corporate rights, and nullifies our ordinance. The issues surrounding what towns can & can't do concerning drilling are fairly clear, & are spelled out in PA's Oil & Gas Act, PA's Home Rule Charter, and the Municipal Planning Code. Townships can regulate via zoning where drilling can occur. They can regulate other matters not addressed in the O&G Act, such as sound, water testing, etc... Towns cannot ban drilling. They can't do it directly via an outright ban such as PT's proposed amendment. They can't do it indirectly as Range claims SF is doing, but relegating drilling to such a small area that in fact "defacto", drilling can't occur. If RR's defacto claim prevails, and if PT's ban amendment is approved by voters, the movement in Harrisburg to REMOVE ZONING AUTHORITY FROM TOWNS will be strengthened. Supporting local drilling ban actions strengthens this "eliminate zoning authority" movement, spearheaded by the industry and supported by many state legislators. The industry claims towns are arbitrary and capricious regarding drilling zoning, & violate the O&G Act. Zoning is the one limited authority towns have to control the character of their towns. Giving the industry support by approving local bans is misguided & will ultimately give the industry more power.
Gary October 17, 2011 at 01:30 AM
ON THE FRONTLINES WITH EARTHJUSTICE Earthjustice recently submitted a petition to the Environmental Protection Agency on behalf of more than 100 organizations in 23 states demanding scrutiny of the many dangerous chemicals used in the process known as fracking, or hydraulic fracturing. Fracking is used to extract oil and gas from certain below-ground formations and has poisoned groundwater in many places. earthjustice.org 202-667-4500 D.C. Office
Jerry D. Hill October 21, 2011 at 04:13 AM
Here I am again Gary. I want everyone to know who funds..... Earthjustice: Billionaire Financier George Soros’ Open Society Institute Gave At Least $5,000 To Earthjustice. (Open Society Institute Website, www.soros.org, Accessed 4/26/05) http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/Articles/GEORGE%20SOROS'%20WEB%20OF%20OBSTRUCTION.htm http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/Articles/GEORGE%20SOROS'%20WEB%20OF%20OBSTRUCTION.htm HERE is the story by PCFFA how they created IFR to get non-profit funding, namely, George Soros-funded Earthjustice to sue resource users. http://www.pcffa.org/fn-jul03.htm http://www.klamathbasincrisis.org/fundingthedemise/TOC.htm Be sure and read this one that explains exactly what Earth Justice is all about. http://www.capitalresearch.org/pubs/pdf/v1233348420.pdf Between 2004 and 2008 the law firm Earthjustice received $550,000 from the Open Society Foundations, a foundation Soros created in 1993, according to Internal Revenue Service records. http://www.capitalpress.com/content/jb-soros-sugar-122410
Rodrick Fletcher October 26, 2011 at 03:13 PM
Please visit PTMSA.com for a balanced opinion against the hysteria emanating from Peters Township council. Vote for your right to the peaceful enjoyment of your property, not just that of Suzanne Kennedy which she thinks she’s secured with her personal lawyer’s intervention. We are not asking you to take away any individual’s rights to profit from their own property, but only when that profit is at the expense of their neighbors.
bigrigroberto October 27, 2011 at 12:59 AM
Wow, Rod, you're everywhere. But so are people who disagree with you. You know, those local lunatics who keep yammering about "law" and "rights" and that pesky "Constitution". Really, can you believe them? How dare they assert that people in this country have rights. What's next--stating they have freedom of speech? Or they can choose their own religion? That's just crazy talk. Thank goodness we have you out there reminding people the only way is your way...
bradenmikael October 27, 2011 at 12:52 PM
Isn't it wonderful Range Resources wishes to dictate as to what a township can do? Who does Range Resources think they are? Not only do they screw up the value of property/land(s) near any fracking site, they now think they can force it upon you by a lawsuit. Thuggery at it's finest.
Judy Thadddeus October 27, 2011 at 01:46 PM
Laws dictate what a township can do. Range seems to be demanding that Cecil follow the laws. Branden, the property value propoganda was yesterdays soundbite. Please check your favorite haters blog to see what your assigned soundbite is for today.
bradenmikael October 27, 2011 at 03:00 PM
Really, Judy? Then perhaps Range ought to follow laws, too. Especially concerning laws pertaining to environmental safety. Proof? Got it. Photographic proof of what these guys do, like drawing water out of creeks. Let me guess, Judy; you're working for Range.
bigrigroberto October 27, 2011 at 03:55 PM
If you have proof, show it. I mean, if you can prove your silly allegations, then surely that would achieve your agenda, right? Wouldn't it end all the debate? Or is this like the blood test "proof" and the infrared camera "proof" and the my-children-are-sick "proof"...meaning not quite real? Serve it up, Parker. I'd like to see the basis for your statements.
bradenmikael October 27, 2011 at 04:50 PM
Bigrigroberto: take a drive through Hickory, PA, to start off with. Or, will you dismiss that as the "blood test" proof you pro fracking cretin?
bigrigroberto October 27, 2011 at 06:52 PM
Cretin? That's classy...so when you've lost the argument, you call people names? Ok, I can deal with that. And I'll deal with it by asking again for facts and proof. Show all of us the photos of the drained creek and any other alleged environmental violation. Either you have proof or you don't.
Judy Thadddeus October 27, 2011 at 09:37 PM
Braden, It is LEGAL for Range to draw water out of creeks. To prove something, saying "got it" doesn't work. Let me guess, Braden, high school drop out.
Melissa Kessler November 07, 2011 at 12:59 PM
I have a family member in Hickory who has done quite well with the fracking and drilling! They are 100% BEHIND THE INDUSTRY!! HIs property value has increased, he has made money from the gas companies on his property, and it was and is all done LEGALLY. Parker, do you really think these companies are not following the local laws? Please! And no, I do not work for the gas companies! I am a stay at home mom who happens to be behind this industry that creates so many jobs, it is an economic boom to our area, and straight up Capitalism is what this Country of ours needs a little more of these days to get us out of this mess! Since when is draining a creek(s) with permission, an environmental violation? Several studies have shown that fracking and drilling does NOT harm drinking water. In fact the tests prove quite the opposite!
Jet Chandler November 07, 2011 at 08:34 PM
Money has a tendency to blind people to harm they may be doing to others, so, just because some people profit doesn't prove anything. I think it was Lincoln who said, "your rights end at the tip of my nose." Meaning you have rights but your rights can't infringe on anyone else's rights. I am not against the Marcellus Industry but do understand that we need government and other 3rd party oversight to protect all. As far as all out unbridled capitalism goes - a good look back into the late 19th and early 20th century robber barons would prove that isn't good, either. Lassez Faire Capitalism has never worked and it's not the model we need to emulate here. A compressor station too close to a school or homes just isn't a good idea, imo. That's really what we're talking about here in Cecil, no? You people do realize that, right? Imo, it should be a conditional use because not all conditions are favorable to what the drilling industry wants to do. Pretty simple really. Had Range used more discretion in exactly where they wanted to locate this thing then conditional use may have never even come up.
Ileen Springer November 07, 2011 at 08:55 PM
Peters Township, Parker and Braedon please don't be fooled by these corporations POSING as individuals. I think their goal is to get people to react and participate in their games. St. Jude E Thaddeus whats up with the highschool drop out comment - what information is that helping to provide regarding your industry? Are you saying that is who you employ? I thought your ONLY CAUSE was YOUR PETERS TAXES...yet you are right here with bigrig. And I exit, singing Grant's posted song " What the FRACK is going on..with all this fracking going on..I think my water is on fire tonight...
Judy Thadddeus November 07, 2011 at 09:09 PM
Wow, that's all you have left? I'm a corporation? My history of posts would make that a tough sell but when you reach a point of desparation, I guess you have to give it a try.

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