Don’t Drill the Hills Update: Rochester Hills Voting Rights On Hold

Please Note: The content in this post was received as a press release from Don’t Drill the Hills, Inc (DDHI). It is posted solely as an update on this issue. No compensation was received by Rochester Media for posting it, nor should it be perceived as an endorsement of DDHI.

Don’t Drill the Hills, Inc (DDHI) awaits the decision by Oakland County Circuit Court Judge James Alexander on Rochester Hills residents’ right to vote on the City’s oil lease for our park lands and cemetery property. He announced that his decision will be deferred, pending further review. We feel it was a productive day in court as our attorney laid out compelling arguments as to why Rochester Hills Mayor Bryan Barnett and City Council overstepped their authority in denying the residents a vote prior to signing this lease, and why resident’s voice and vote should be restored.

This lawsuit was brought forth by DDHI (a bi-partisan grass-roots community organization of concerned residents) because we strongly believe Rochester Hills Mayor Bryan Barnett and City Council violated a 2011 Charter Amendment which states that City-owned parks cannot be sold, leased, or converted to a non-recreation or non- conservation use without prior approval of the City’s voters in an open election.

The Mayor and City Council has been dismissive of 10 months of packed public comment, resident arranged meetings with local and state officials, and resident pleas for their right to vote on an oil lease for two public parks and a cemetery in the midst of subdivisions and schools. Instead, Rochester Hills City officials pressed on with their unilateral decision to sign this lease and deny their residents a vote.

We feel that both the letter and intent of the law are clear in this case and we are confident Judge James Alexander’s ruling will be in our favor.

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.

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  1. Thank you for covering this very important story.

  2. Concerned Resident says

    Thank you for sharing this information. Time to pay attention to our elected officials actions!

  3. I wonder just exactly when the state and local goverment decided that they are for sale to the oil and gas industry? I have only this to say, I worked my whole life to live in a beautiful house in Shelby Twp. Now there is an oil well in my subdivision. I will NEVER allow it to come to production because it simply DOES NOT BELONG IN A SUBURBAN RESIDENTIAL NEIGHBORHOOD! Not a single one of these oil execs or politicians would stand pat if it was in their backyards either. No way West Bay, it is just not going to happen

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