Saturday, June 18, 2016

Keep on frackin'

Don't you just love these heartwarming stories where ordinary citizens come together and organize to protect their community from predatory industry... and lose?
The Louisiana Supreme Court has refused to consider an appeal by St. Tammany Parish and a citizens group challenging a state decision to award a permit to a company that wants to drill near Lakeshore High School, spokesmen said.

By a 4-3 vote, the court refused to hear the appeal, allowing a decision by the First Circuit Court of Appeals to stand. Justices Greg Guidry, Jeannette Theriot Knoll and Marcus Clark dissented. The appeals panel ruled earlier this year that the parish’s zoning ordinances had to be considered, but not followed, by the state when considering the permit application.

The decision effectively ends a nearly two year legal challenge against Helis Oil & Gas’ plans to drill an oil well in a wooded tract northeast of Mandeville. The case pitted the parish against the state’s Commissioner of Conservation, who issued a permit to Helis to drill. The group Concerned Citizens of St. Tammany, which has opposed the well, joined the suit on the side of the parish. Helis also joined on the side of the Commissioner of Conservation.
Most of the time they lose, actually.  Now Helis can look forward to taking advantage of state tax exemptions for drilling and fracking since we already know the legislature will fail to eliminate those.  

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