By Emily Mathis
By the time Denton’s city offices opened this morning, officials already had two brand new lawsuits waiting for them. As Denton’s attorneys begin the weary post-election process of sorting through a legal defense against this inevitable barrage of suits, it’s clear the battle over the ban on fracking voters approved Tuesday has just begun.
Denton’s proposed fracking ban, which had gained national attention in the last few weeks, passed Tuesday night in a landslide: 59 percent of voters favored the ban, while just 41 percent voted against. This is despite ban opponents far out-spending and out-advertising anti-frackers. Frack Free Denton raised just $75,000 for its campaign, compared with $700,000 spent by pro-fracking groups.
But now that the morning-after glow of victory has subsided, the City of Denton must face the mighty backlash of the oil and gas industry. City spokesperson Lindsey Baker confirms that the Texas Oil and Gas Association and the General Land Office are the first so far, though most decidedly not the last, to lash out against the ban.
Cathy McMullen, the president of Frack Free Denton, says that the city had been prepping for a legal fight should the ban pass. Now that it has, she expects a good fight. Although city attorney Anita Burgess has previously expressed her opposition to the ban, the city will likely include outside counsel as, in accordance with Denton voters’ wishes, it fights now to keep the ban.Read full article