Fort Worth’s embracing of the oil and gas industry continued with last night’s unanimous city council decision to allow drilling next to Trinity Park.
Most people who live nearby and own mineral rights want the wells and the potential royalties they bring.
Other residents aren’t so sure.
And still others are just plain pissed off.
In the past few years Jerry Lobdill has become a hornet in the drillers’ bonnets — and a passionate spokesman for many people who feel trampled over by city officials and gas drillers.
Here are some excerpts from an email he sent today about the city council’s vote last night:
“This is just the latest in the planned attack on Fort Worth,” he wrote in an email. “Now Chesapeake and XTO, the two main drillers here, have everything in place to let ‘er rip. The City Council is in their pocket. These stipulations are simply fluff designed to give the impression that the Council is in control. Let’s see … they’ve ignored their 600 foot set-back requirement because of an ordinance provision that if the drillers can present signed waivers from all of the mineral rights owners within the 600 radius then the setback can be waived. This has become standard operating procedure.
“They are permitting multi-well pad sites with 10-20 gas wells right next to schools, playgrounds, and city parks now. Two years ago that wouldn’t have been permitted at all. However, whenever it suits the Council’s purpose, the 600 foot setback provision is hauled out and touted as proof of the Council’s concern for public safety and public health.
“There is no limit to the wide open hypocrisy involved in gassing the citizens of Fort Worth. This is the application of Mayor Moncrief’s Dancing With Bears 101 strategy.
“Don’t ever sit down at the negotiating table with the devil. You can’t win; you can’t break even, and once you sit down you’re toast.”