WARREN - An anti-frac group says Halcon Resources Corp. is seeking to drill under one of the area's primary water sources, but Halcon and the water district say there are no plans to do so at this time.
The Committee for the Community Bill of Rights, a group pressing a Nov. 5 ballot issue that would ban gas and oil drilling and related businesses within Youngstown city limits, said the group obtained documentation suggesting Halcon intends to drill on property adjacent to Meander Reservoir, including horizontal lines under the reservoir which provides water to about 200,000 customers of the Mahoning Valley Sanitary District.
However, MVSD board president Matthew Blair said the board is not aware of any application to drill under the reservoir, a requirement before anything could be done.
"I believe someone is trying to create a publicity stunt," Blair said Friday. "They (Halcon) made some preliminary contacts with us to see if we were interested, but we have taken the position that we are not interested of having another well on or under property at Meander Reservoir."
Halcon Resources Operations Vice President Jim Stubbs confirmed the company has had preliminary talks with MVSD representatives and other area leaders.
"The potential for Utica horizontal drilling in areas of Trumbull and Mahoning counties looks promising and we look forward to working with the MVSD and other community leaders to pursue lasting economic development and job creation opportunities for the greater Meander Creek region," Stubbs said.
Messages left with a Columbus attorney representing the MVSD on gas drilling issues were not returned. Information sought from the state Department of Natural Resources about regulations on drilling under Ohio's public water sources was not immediately released.
The Committee of the Community Bill of Rights is a group seeking to get Youngstown voters to vote yes this November on a Youngstown charter amendment that would ban oil and gas drilling within the city in an effort to protect water sources and the air.
A similar measure that appeared on the May ballot failed.