YOUNGSTOWN -- Voters have rejected a proposal to ban hydraulic fracturing here where disposal of wastewater from the drilling method led to earthquakes and alleged groundwater contamination.
Unofficial results Tuesday showed about 57 percent of the votes cast were against the Community Bill of Rights prohibiting the controversial high-pressure oil and gas drilling technique, also called fracking, inside city limits in Youngstown.
The city council put the proposal on the ballot after an anti-fracking group called Frackfree Mahoning Valley collected the necessary signatures.
Officials questioned whether the ban could be enforced because drilling in Ohio is regulated by the state, not cities. Activists supporting the proposal disagreed.
Drilling-related episodes near Youngstown have primarily involved deep-injection wells where wastewater from fracking and other forms of drilling is deposited.