Ohio elections chief, anti-fracking groups dispute ballot issues

Associated Press


Attorneys for Ohio’s elections chief are arguing in the Ohio Supreme Court that he acted properly in sidelining county anti-fracking measures proposed for fall ballots.

Election boards in Athens, Meigs and Portage counties invalidated initiative petitions seeking to put the measures on 2016 ballots and Secretary of State Jon Husted upheld those decisions.

Supporters filed suit arguing Husted may decide the validity of their petitions, but not the merits of the “community rights county charters” they propose. A similar fight happened last year.

Husted and the counties contend the charters would leave counties without an authorized form of government.

The charters call for restricting the use of water for hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, used in oil-and-gas development and prohibiting disposal of fracking wastewater.

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