Legislator Accountability Day March 6: Ohio is Not for S(h)ale

Citizens call for local control, Emergency Medical Right-to-know, and ban of toxic radioactive liquid waste disposal

Madeline ffitch, of Athens County and Appalachia Resist!, will be among speakers Wednesday, March 6, when citizens from Athens County and across the state converge on the Statehouse to lobby legislators on proposed fracking legislation. Members of Athens County Fracking Action Network will also attend Legislator Accountability Day, sponsored by Buckeye Forest Council; Frack Free Ohio; Food & Water Watch; Center for Heath, Environment, and Justice; Ohio Citizen Action and Ohio Sierra Club. The groups are calling for a return of local municipal control over oil and gas activities, emergency medical right-to-know and a ban on liquid waste resulting from fracking.  Meetings have been scheduled with Lou Gentile and other representatives.

The lobby day begins at the Ohio Theater at 10:00 a.m., with lawmaker meetings scheduled throughout the day.  Citizens will rally on the Statehouse lawn at 1:00 p.m., where speakers will address the most pressing issues related to fracking in Ohio. Speakers will include rally Susie Beiersdorfer, geologist, Youngstown State University; Madeline ffitch, Athens area activist; and Carolyn Harding of Cinublue Productions. The day will culminate with a petition delivery to Governor Kasich’s office at 2:30 p.m.

WHO: Citizen groups; Buckeye Forest Council; Frack Free Ohio; Food & Water Watch; Center for Heath, Environment, and Justice; Ohio Citizen Action; Ohio Sierra Club

WHAT: Legislator Accountability Day, lobby meetings, rally, petition delivery


10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.: lobbying workshop and lawmaker meetings

1:00 p.m.: rally

2:30 p.m.: petition delivery

WHERE: Galbreath Pavilion, Room #1, Ohio Theater, 39 E. State St. (http://bit.ly/YwoDSB) for training; Ohio Statehouse for lawmaker meetings and rally; Governor Kasich’s office at Riffe Center (http://bit.ly/15NET6Z) for petition delivery

WHY: Citizens and environmental groups are calling on state lawmakers and the Governor to act on key pieces of fracking legislation:

  • Ohio has quickly become a dumping ground for toxic fracking waste, which has been found to be carcinogenic and radioactive. Injection wells are known to leak. A ProPublica review of well records, case histories and government summaries of more than 220,000 well inspections found that structural failures inside injection wells are routine. From late 2007 to late 2010, one well integrity violation was issued for every six deep injection wells examined. Ohio citizens are asking lawmakers to co-sponsor and move upcoming legislation that would ban oil and gas liquid waste from being injected underground, spread on Ohio roadways, and discharged from treatment plants into Ohio’s waterways.
  • Ohio law prevents doctors, nurses, firefighters, EMS, police and hazmat teams from getting life-saving information quickly in emergencies and limits how they can use information if they do receive it. Senate Bill 17 and House Bill 42 would give medical professionals and emergency responders complete access to chemical information and make the oil and gas industry play by the same emergency planning rules as other industries in Ohio.
  • Communities across Ohio have been calling for a return of local control over oil and gas activities, restoring the authority that was taken away in 2004. House Bill 41 would restore local control, allowing local municipalities to decide whether and where fracking could be in their community.