Frackers Would Hold A Hearing In Chicago – When the fracking is going to happen in the Shawnee National Forest

Nobody would ever think that Wild Catters are crooks. No way!


Day 32   12/16/13

Today’s Topic:  Hearings should be held in the counties that will be affected

  • Go to:
  • Click the button: Subpart B: Registration and Permitting Procedures
  • In the “Section” dropdown box, click: 245.270 Public Hearings
  • Submit your comment/s (below)
  • Click “Submit”

Section 245.270(b)(2) of the Rules gives the Department broad latitude regarding where to hold a hearing, including holding hearings outside the affected counties. It is imperative that the hearings be held IN the county where a well will be located. A location outside the affected county will not serve the public interest.  It could create an enormous barrier to participation by ordinary citizens, who may not have the resources, time or child care options for out-of-town travel.  Furthermore, out-of-county hearings limit the ability of ordinary citizens to call local witnesses, who may have critical information but be unable or unwilling to come to Springfield.  Finally, out of county hearings impede the practicalityfor interested neighbors to attend and observe the hearing, defeating the purpose of ensuring transparency in the permitting process.

It should not be difficult to identify locations where hearings can be held in affected counties. Courthouses, schools, and in some cases county board offices or town halls generally have space that could accommodate a hearing. Furthermore, with the availability and low cost of web-based technology, the Department should be able to appear remotely at a hearing being held in the affected county even if travel there is logistically impossible. But we posit that if it is too expensive or inconvenient for the Department to travel to hearings in counties that will be affected, then it is unfeasible to expect ordinary citizens to bear that burden by traveling to off-site counties to testify in hearings.

Solution:  Hold all hearings in the county in which a well is to be located.

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