LONGMONT — It’s time for oil and gas to come to the surface again.Council members to re-examine preamble to regulations on Tuesday.
The Longmont City Council will once again discuss its new oil and gas regulations Tuesday night, having taken a timeout since May 22 to hear from state and industry officials.
Councilman Brian Bagley said he would suggest some changes to help get the rules passed, including dropping a lengthy preamble that cites several studies on the effects of drilling and hydraulic fracturing.
“It doesn’t state any law, it just says we’re doing it for these reasons,” Bagley said of the passage. “If people are upset, why not take it out?”
Councilwoman Bonnie Finley had objected to the five-page-plus preamble, saying that she considered some of the included studies to be of questionable value.
“That’s like saying the sky is purple and the gas people did it!” she said in May.
The revisions would still leave a core provision of the regulations in place — that drilling would not be allowed in a residential zone without special permission by city authorities. But that might become a battlefield, Bagley said.
“We’re getting pressure from the industry to take out the residential ban,” said Bagley, a supporter of the ban. “My concern is if we’ll have the votes to pass regs that’ll have any teeth.”
The rules are scheduled to be voted on July 17; if adopted, they would be the first revision of Longmont’s drilling rules since 2000.