Commonwealth Court Overturns Parts of Act 13

Commonwealth Court struck down parts of Act 13 usurping local control of zoning and ordinances affecting the fracking industry.  Gas drillers who have seized control of many lawmakers and Gov. Gasbag passed a law which taxes them at a miniscule rate and seized state control over local municipalities.  Many of them banded together and sued.  Yesterday they won.  Local governments cannot be forced out of the decision making process over energy companies coming into their neighborhoods, erecting drill pads, stealing water and tearing up their roads.

This is the first law passed by the Republican controlled state government to be decided in court.  Many of them either are or will be challenged in courts but the Act 13 decision is the first.  Remember, your tax dollars are being expended litigating all this stuff.  The VoterID bill is currently in hearings before Commonwealth Court and will likely be either struck down or frozen.  The Governor told the court this week that no reasonable basis exists to justify disenfranchising 758,000 voters.  The chances of that law standing are next to none in light of that revelation.

The Governor can say anything he wants at bill signings and public events but lying to a court is something quite different.  I hope you’re happy using precious state resources wastefully defending bad laws.  I remember a time when conservatives actually believed in fiscal responsibility.  This is all irresponsible when 14,000 teachers are fired, mentally disabled Pennsylvanians are going without services and Corbett is throwing 70,000 people off welfare.  140,000 have been thrown out of medical care.  These are very twisted priorities.

2 thoughts on “Commonwealth Court Overturns Parts of Act 13”

  1. In a forceful affirmation of the inherent value of Pennsylvania’s open records law, a Commonwealth Court decision holds that the PA Department of Environmental Protection may not refuse to produce records on water contamination caused by oil and gas drilling.

    Apparently, the DEP’s leading (and rather lame) argument was that searching for such records would be an unreasonable “burden” on the agency.

    Matt Thomas

     

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