BREAKING: Two Arrested at Private Meeting Between Gas Industry and Politicians in Trumbull County
Brookfield, Ohio Two Trumbull County residents were arrested Thursday afternoon outside the Ohio Shale Forum, another closed-to-the-public meeting on fracking attended by Ohio Governor Kasich, officials, legislators, and gas drilling representatives in Brookfield, Ohio at the Yankee Lake Ballroom.
John Williams and Jeremy Bingham of McDonald, OH were each charged with criminal trespass. They have been released without bond and are scheduled to appear in Brookfield Township Court next Thursday. Williams, a 55-year-old Coast Guard veteran, was arrested for attempting to gain access to the meeting, citing concerns about the environmental and health impacts of increased drilling in his hometown. Williams commented, Anytime public officials convene with corporate executives without the public being invited to the table, it is plain wrong. If fracking is so safe, then why are they hiding from us? If our public officials are so intent on being legally right but morally wrong but, then we have no problem being legally wrong but morally right.
Before his arrest, Williams presented Rep. Tom Letson of Trumbull County with information regarding industry donations to Ohio state legislators and asked to be allowed inside the ballroom. Rep. Letson refused to assist Williams in gaining access to the meeting.
Bingham, 21-years-old, had left the property upon request of the police and returned in order to film Williams arrest. He was then arrested without any opportunity to leave the premises. Police also confiscated literature from protesters who were attempting to voice their concerns at the entrance to the ballroom.
When Kasich and the legislators meet with oil company reps., they prefer it to be in secret...
Kudos to the two who brought attention to the crime.
Really, are they afraid of a few people who want answers? Really?
This is my backyard, and I have been watching too many of these meetings where only people who are pro-fracking are admitted. In fact, there have been damned few open meetings in this area. It stinks....there has to be too much hidden when they don't want fresh air on it.
If fracking is just so great and safe and wonderful, why does everything about it have to be such a secret?
http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2011/11/14/367772/kasich-oil-gas-most-ohio-donations/According to new report from the nonpartisan Common Cause, however, the oil and gas industry may have provided Kasich with plenty of reasons not to walk away. Kasich has taken $213,519 in contributions from the oil and gas industry, the most of any Ohio politician.
Following are the total contributions that members of the Republican-controlled Ohio General Assembly received from March 2011 through this January from the political action committee of Chesapeake Energy, or from lobbyists for Chesapeake. All are Republicans unless otherwise noted.
David Hall, Holmes County (Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee chair, Finance Committee member) - $16,500
House Speaker William G. Batchelder, Medina - $8,500
Christina Hagan, Stark County - $7,500
Cheryl Grossman, Columbus area (Finance Committee member) - $7,000
Timothy Derickson, Southwest Ohio, (Finance Committee member) - $2,350
Anne Gonzales, Columbus area (Finance Committee member) - $2,000
Andy Thompson, Southeast Ohio - $1,350
Jim Buchy, Southwest Ohio - $1,250
Al Landis, Southeast Ohio - $1,250
Matt Huffman, Lima (majority floor leader - $1,000
Terry Boose, Norwalk - $1,000
Rex Damschroder, Northwest Ohio - $1,000
Ron Amstutz, Wooster (Finance Committee chair) - $1,000
Jim Butler, Dayton area - $1,000
Craig Newbold, Eastern Ohio - $500
John Adams, Sidney (majority whip) - $500
John Carey, Southern Ohio (Finance Committee member, no longer in the legislature) - $300
Margaret Ann Ruhl, Mount Vernon - $300
Casey Kozlowski, Ashtabula County - $250
Senate President Tom Niehaus, Southwest Ohio - $11,500
Keith Faber, Western Ohio (president pro tempore) - $6,000
Cliff Hite, Northwest Ohio - $5,750
Dave Daniels, Southern Ohio (no longer in the legislature) - $3,500
Troy Balderson, Southeast Ohio - $3,000
Tim Schaffer, Central Ohio - $2,500
Gayle Manning, North Ridgeville - $2,000
Tom Patton, Strongsville - $2,000
Shannon Jones, Southwest Ohio - $1,000
Jason Wilson, Eastern Ohio (Democrat, no longer in the legislature) -$1,000
Lou Gentile, Steubenville (Democrat) - $1,000
Jimmy Stewart, Athens area (no longer in the legislature) - $500
Bob Peterson, Southern Ohio - $500
Joe Schiavoni, Youngstown area (Democrat, assistant minority leader) - $300