Don’t Drill the Hills, Inc. Drives Rochester Hills City Council About-Face

Please Note: The content in this post was received as a press release from Don’t Drill the Hills, Inc (DDHI) in response to the moratorium recently passed by the Rochester Hills City Council. It is posted solely as another viewpoint/opinion on this matter. No compensation was received by Rochester Media for posting it, nor should it be perceived as an endorsement of DDHI.

After eight months of consistent pressure from Don’t Drill The Hills, Inc (DDHI), and recent urgency expressed by other local and state legislators following the July installation of an oil rig next to a densely populated subdivision in Shelby Township, Rochester Hills City Council hastily passed a 6 month oil/gas drilling moratorium for the City. City Council has finally recognized citizens’ voices, which since January have made clear that oil and gas drilling is not welcome in our densely populated residential community. This is proof that a bi-partisan grassroots effort by voters, who are parents, property owners, and business owners, can make a difference in the community.
This moratorium, while a step in the right direction, is not nearly enough. DDHI and Rochester Hills citizens continue to ask City Council to work harder and faster to put better solutions in place – such as:

  • Rescind the lease of park and cemetery land that the City voluntarily signed with Jordan Development, but without prior vote of the residents. Rescinding the lease sends the message that City Council really wants to change their position on gas and oil drilling.
  • Develop and pass meaningful local ordinances that will be more effective in restricting oil/gas drilling and production operations in high-density residential and school areas.

While DDHI celebrates the moratorium as a victory towards protecting our residential areas, we realize the effects of such are temporary and enforcement difficult. Substantive work toward enacting local ordinances as well as legislative and regulatory change at the State level is still urgently necessary. DDHI is pleased that residential drilling issues are getting attention in Lansing. We hope that the Legislature works with us and other grassroots organizations to create meaningful protections, beyond Senate Bill 1026, for all who could be subject to the negative effects of drilling near their homes and schools.
However, some fear the sudden flurry of such measures is compelled by election season; and efforts may be fleeting post-election. DDHI and other groups against drilling in high-density residential and school zones are steadfast in their commitment to see these efforts through. We look forward to working productively in this process.

Don’t Drill the Hills, Inc. is a non-partisan grassroots nonprofit corporation that is building awareness of the risks of horizontal drilling in high-density residential and K-12 School areas. Concerns include: property rights, property values, mortgage and insurance complications, as well as potential environmental and health risks.

About Sarah Hovis

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