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Understanding city’s charter amendment

Published: Wed, May 1, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

The city of Youngstown is being asked to vote on a proposed charter amendment May 7. The entire amendment is fairly long and wordy. I decided to read and then summarize the proposed amendment as provided by the website www.youngstownrights.org.

Based on the first four articles of the proposed amendment, the following will be illegal in the City of Youngstown:

The extraction of shale gas or oil using “hydro-fracturing.”

To deposit, store or transport waste water, “produced” water, “frack” water, brine or other materials, chemicals or by-products used in the extraction of gas or oil, within, upon or through the land, air or waters.

To engage in the placement of production and delivery infrastructures, such as pipeline, processing facilities, compressors, or storage and transportation facilities supporting the extraction of shale gas or oil.

To use a corporation to engage in the extraction of water from any surface or subsurface source within Youngstown for use in the extraction of shale gas or oil within city limits.

The following articles of the amendment propose decrees concerning corporations engaged in the extraction of gas or oil:

Corporations engaged in a neighboring municipality shall be liable for all harms caused to natural water sources, ecosystems, human and natural communities within the city, including Meander Creek and its tributaries.

Corporations shall not have the rights of persons under the U.S. and Ohio Constitutions.

Corporations shall not possess the authority or power to enforce State or federal preemptive law against the people of Youngstown, or to challenge or overturn municipal laws or charter provisions adopted by the city.

No permit, license, privilege or charter issued by any state or federal agency, commission or board to any person or any corporation operating under a state charter, or any director, officer, owner, or manager of a corporation operating under a state charter, which would violate the prohibitions of this charter provision or deprive any city resident, natural community, or ecosystem of any rights, privileges ... shall be deemed valid within the city.

Any person, corporation, or other entity that violates any prohibition of this law shall be guilty of a summary offense and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to pay the maximum fine allowable under state law for that violation, and shall be imprisoned to the extent allowed by the law. A separate offense shall arise for each day in which a violation occurs and for each section of this Law found to be violated. Enforcement of this article may be initiated by the Youngstown Police Department, the director of public safety, or other designee of city council. In such an action, Youngstown shall be entitled to recover damages and all costs of litigation, including, without limitation, expert and attorney’s fees.

Any city resident shall have the authority to enforce this law through an action in equity. Damages shall be measured by the cost of restoring the natural community or ecosystem to its pre-damaged state.

It is clear after reading the amendment that its purpose is to protect the environment and populous of the city from potential hazards.

However, the articles within the amendment are somewhat vague and leave interpretation to the reader.

The issue on the ballot is for you to decide. I hope this helped to understand the amendment.


176Ytown(1321 comments)posted 3 years ago

Youngstown, just so you know you are not alone in community rights initiatives, here's a list of cities across the US with moratoriums and ban.


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2oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago


Presenting this list is misleading. It is meant to show that the charter amendment is just the same as "similar" measures passed around the country.

This is not true. Each state has it's own code of laws and regulations. Under the Ohio Revised Code this charter will be unenforceable.

Cities and other government entities in Ohio receive their authority to pass laws and regulations from the Ohio Revised Code. That authority is limited and the Code lists those limitations. One of those limitations is that local ordinances do not and cannot supercede state laws and regulations.

The state of Ohio reserves to itself, and it's agency the ODNR, the right to oversee and regulate oil and gas development in Ohio. This reservation will make the provisions of the charter amendment to regulate oil and gas development unenforceable.

Help preserve our Constitutional form of government. VOTE NO MAY 7TH !

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3mishmash(329 comments)posted 3 years ago

Truly a BAD WRITTEN charter amendment.


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476Ytown(1321 comments)posted 3 years ago

Don't mislead. This is a list of cities across the US with moratoriums and ban.


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5oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago


Not misleading, just pointing out that the only thing those moratoriums and bans have in common with the charter amendment is that they are bans and moratoriums on oil and gas development.
The misinformation comes from you and others.My point is that although they are similar perhaps the laws of the other states allow them.
The laws of Ohio will not allow the charter amendment to be enforced.

The only way to change that is through legislation passed in the Ohio legislature. Until you do that the charter amendment or other bans and moratoriums in Ohio cannot be enforced.
It's the law.

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6walter_sobchak(2595 comments)posted 3 years ago

The charter amendment is a bunch of crap. Local communities have no authority over the US and Ohio Constitutions, nor can laws be enacted that are in conflict with them. That can only be done on the federal or state level. Further, ecosystems, including all flora and fauna, have no rights as rights only apply to people, which are endowed on thwem from our Creator. Otherwise, killing a bird with with your car would be a capital crime. And, do companies, such as V&M or Exterran that manufacture products for oil and gas exploration and infrastructure, have to close since they would be violating the charter amendment? Hopefully, the citizens of Youngstown will see how ridiculous this is and vote it down.

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7Metz10987(145 comments)posted 3 years ago

Actually the hope is this will make the state legislature rethink not allowed local communties have any say on what they want and do not want going in their community. They like;ly have been coropted by the industry and the promise of big money coming into the state which if it even happens will likely not come back here in large amounts. Have little faith are state lawmakers will do anything but it is their final say.

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8oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

To understand the charter amendment you should also understand the socio-political philosophy of the people behind the amendment.

Their philosophy is Liberalism.

Liberalism is a mental disorder. To fully discuss this would take far more space and time provided here. So let's deal with a couple of aspects of the disorder.

People suffering from the disorder have a distorted sense of self worth. They have a belief in their superiority to others.They believe they know better how to run your life than you do.

Thus the charter amendment. These liberal believe they know better than the people of the city of Youngstown. (The people behind the charter are not from Youngstown).

They also suffer from a lack of basic morality. The liberal believes that the end justifies the means. In other words it's ok to lie and deceive as long as the goal is met. (remember that sense of superiority ? They always believe their goals are right).

We can see this lack of morality in the campaign promoting the amendment. The use rumor, hyperbole, and lies. First they mislead people when collecting signatures. Next they manufactured lies about shale development. Finally, they distort constitutional law.

As I said it's sickness.

Help protect the rights of all residents of the city of Youngstown, VOTE NO MAY 7TH!

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9oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago


Man, you guys never stop with the nonsense. This report has been debunked so many times you should be embarrased to mention it.

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10oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

The Big Lie.

The charter amendment is being sold for any number of false reasons. What you won't ever hear is the real reason.

Leftist liberals hate private property rights. They just get in the way of the leftist agenda. So over the years they have devised any number of schemes to take property rights from land owners.

The charter amendment is the leftists first attempt in Youngstown. If you read the language carefully you will see that it is very vague. This was intentional. Another intentional inclusion in the amendment is the right of citizens to enforce the amendment (outside normal legal channels)

So what you may ask ? It's all about control. The far left hates the use of fossil fuels but have no control of them. This amendment would give them the control to regulate or eliminate the use of fossil fuels in the city of Youngstown.

At this time there are leftists moving into the city in order to be recognized as citizens. If the amendment were to pass these people would use the vague language to bring suit for all manner of supposed infractions of toxic trespass. Theie main target is the use of automobiles. They would bring law suit after lawsuit until the use of cars in the city would be literally banned. Then they move on to the target, perhaps air conditioning etc etc.

Sounds pretty wild I know, but I have a family member who believes all this nonsense and laid it out for me.

The charter amendment is all a Big Lie, VOTE NO MAY 7TH !

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11oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

Denial and accepting facts are two different animals. Unfortunately you come down on the flat earth side of that equasion.You and your friends would have hated Galileo. Ptolemy,Copernicus, Darwin etc if you had lived in their times.

You and the other anti shale development folks are flat earthers.

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1276Ytown(1321 comments)posted 3 years ago

OH13voter you said: (#8) "Liberalism is a mental disorder. To fully discuss this would take far more space and time provided here. So let's deal with a couple of aspects of the disorder.

People suffering from the disorder have a distorted sense of self worth. They have a belief in their superiority to others.They believe they know better how to run your life than you do.

In (#11), you said: Leftist liberals hate private property rights. They just get in the way of the leftist agenda. So over the years they have devised any number of schemes to take property rights from land owners.

OH13voter: It would have been nice if before you spew your diarrhea of the mouth you looked up the definition.

Wikipedia definition of Liberalism: A political philosophy or worldview founded on ideas of liberty and equality. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but generally they support ideas such as free and fair elections, civil rights, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, free trade, and private property.

1. progressive. 7. broad-minded, unprejudiced. 9. beneficent, charitable, openhanded, munificent, unstinting, lavish.

Stop name calling. The people who you consider the opposition are just concerned citizens who want to be sure that the decisions made today will not be regretted tomorrow. You can not buy health. There is much at stake here.

You've stated already it's not about jobs for Youngstown, you're main concern is that Youngstown may be excluded from the fracking get-rich scheme. Maybe you are a landman assigned to the city of Youngstown and you're afraid that you won't be able to sign leases in your assigned territory?

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13oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

Charter Amendment is vaguely written and will deprive the citizens of Youngstown of their property rights.

The amendment gives enforcement power to all citizens. This is a dangerous precedence, and will pit neighbor against neighbor considering other vague language in the amendment. Some examples:

the right to breathe untainted air - do cars not taint our air with their exhaust? People will claims to have cars removed from their street or neighborhood, or ban lawnmowers etc.

the right to peaceful enjoyment of home - your neighbor may feel your lawn mower is to loud, or doesn't like your music , or your children are to loud.The neighbor doesn't like the aroma from a tree or flower bed in your yard and demands it be torn out.

The right to be free of toxic trespass - if you fertilize your lawn the neighbor could bring suit against you, again a neighbor could bring suit against the exhaust from your car.

Help protect the rights of "all" citizens of Youngstown, VOTE NO MAY 7TH !

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14oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

As written the amendment gives enforcement rights to the individual. It will pit neighbor against neighbor.

So let's say your neighbor feels you are violating his "inalienable right" to quiet enjoyment. He informs you of this, you disagree and tell him to mind his own business.

But it is his business the amendment says it is. So gathers a few of his friends and shows up at your house and beats you.

The amendment allows for vigilante justice, might makes right.

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15cambridge(3931 comments)posted 3 years ago

ohoh13....those voices in your head are working a little overtime.

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16oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

Big Lie 147

Shale development reduces property rights.

There is no evidence that shale development reduces property rights. This is a scare tactic made up by those opposed to shale development.

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17oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

Severability does not mean it is a living document that can be amended.

Severability means that if any portion of the amendment is found to be unconstitutional or unenforcable (which it will be) the remainder of the amendment would continue..

You were lied to about this, which isn't surprising since the whole amendment has been sold on a pack of lies.

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18cambridge(3931 comments)posted 3 years ago

ohoh13....so what you are saying is that the hundreds of communities listed above in post #3 know how to write an enforceable document but the community against fracking in Youngstown doesn't?

It's those kinds of statements and lies about beatdowns over BBQ's and lawn mower pollution that help people with a half a brain decide how to vote. Keep it up.

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19oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 3 years ago

Big Lie 253 & 254

There are laws, similar to the charter amendment, in place across the country , and they have been proven enforceable.

This is a lie for a couple of reasons.

First: there have been similar actions taken across the country, but not all are charter amendments or laws. Many are simple bans or moratoriums.

Second: They are enforceable - it's not really known since little or no legal action has resulted yet.

Finally - each state has it's own code of laws and they are not all the same. So it is with Ohio. The manner in which the charter amendment is written violates the U.S. Constitution and the State Constitution. This is not true across the country.

So the Big Lie that this amendment is enforceable due to precedence from across the country is not true, it's a lie.

Big Lie 254 - the charter amendment is enforceable under Ohio state law. Not true, it violates the Ohio Revised Code and the Constitution and will be struck down.

Please help preserve our constitutional form of government, VOTE NO MAY 7TH !

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2076Ytown(1321 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

UticaShale...in response to your post # 22:

Lets just pretend... Mrs. Maddox owns 4 acres on the eastside of Youngstown. She wants to farm marijuana to sell to a drug dealer who will then sell to children which causes harm. The city says that she cannot farm marijuana. Who will compensate her for her loss?

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21oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

Mrs. Maddox could choose to raise a legal crop.

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22oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

Desperation reigns in the fractivist camp, They are now suggesting that senior citizens should raise marijuana for income instead of leasing their property.

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2376Ytown(1321 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

oh13voter...cultivation is not legal in Ohio.

Read UticaShale's post #22.

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24oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

No kidding brainchild.
As I stated the land owner has an option to grow a legal crop. In other words she has an option other than to grow pot.

If the city takes away her right to lease her property she has no option.

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25oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

The charter amendment proponents use lies to sell the amendment.

Big Lie :

Shale development exposes people to "toxic" radioactivity. LIE !

We are exposed to radioactivity everyday, it's called Normally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORM) It's all around us and is not dangerous.

It's even in the shale that is being developed. The NORM in the shale is no more dangerous than the NORM we are exposed to everyday.

Your Mayor, your Council and candidates are all opposed to the charter amendment, support them, VOTE NO tomorrow MAY 7TH !

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26oh13voter(1205 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

Congratulations Youngstown !
Better days are on the way.

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