Cathy Proctor Reporter– Denver Business Journal
Colorado won’t sue Longmont over a ballot initiative that bans hydraulic fracturing within city limits, but the state stands ready to support any oil and gas company that believes the ban on fracking constitutes a taking of its mineral rights, Gov. John Hickenlooper said Thursday.
“It’s a clear taking from oil and gas mineral rights owners,” Hickenlooper said Thursday during a speech to more than 300 oil and gas executives at the Rockies Midstream Conference, presented by Hart Energy, at the Colorado Convention Center.
“But there is uncertainty on whether [the state has] legal standing to sue, because nothing has been taken from the state,” he said.
If a company with leases in the area sues Longmont — something Hickenlooper said he believes will happen, based on conversations he’s had with oil and gas executives in recent weeks — the state will offer its “help and support” he said.
“I am very certain [Longmont’s ban on fracking] will not stand unchallenged,” Hickenlooper said.