Fracking ban loses for third time

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — For the third time in a year, Youngstown voters rejected a charter amendment that would have banned fracking within the city limits.

The Community Bill of Rights was defeated 54 percent to 46 percent, according to complete but unofficial results from the Mahoning County Board of Elections. It was about the same margin of defeat as the previous tries last May and in November.

The Mahoning Valley Coalition for Job Growth and Investment, a broad collaboration of Mahoning Valley elected officials, business, labor and community leaders, advocated against the charter amendment.

“The Community Bill of Rights would have been a job-killer and put Youngstown far behind other cities in attracting new business to the city,” said Youngstown Mayor John A. McNally in an emailed news release. “Youngstown is making a comeback and this charter amendment would have stopped that growth.

“For a third time on this issue, Youngstown voters have said they support jobs and opportunity in Youngstown,” said Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber President Tom Humphries. “We hope those supporting this legislation will now respect the will of the voters and not make yet another attempt that wastes tax dollars that could be wisely used elsewhere.”

“Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 opposed this issue from the very beginning because it would have cost all of us hard-working, blue-collar jobs that Youngstown depends on,” said Butch Taylor. Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 business manager. “We deserve more opportunities and a brighter future for all of our citizens and this law could have put that in jeopardy. That certainly includes shale oil and gas jobs, but also all manufacturing jobs.”

“Once again, we went out there and had the conversation with voters that this would have major consequences on businesses and jobs,” said Community Mobilization Committee Vice Chair and GOTV Campaign Coordinator Jaladah Aslam. “Shale jobs could make a great impact in our lives in Youngstown. We know we need to continue sending them the message that we will not support policies that paint our city as closed for business.”

Election results are unofficial

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