- Mass Casualties
- Natural Disasters
- Financial Crisis
- Food Borne Diseases
- US Recall News
- Class Action Lawsuit
- Recent Outbreaks
- Railroad Law
- Court News
- Legal Insight
- Court Watch
- Supreme Court blocks some redrawn North Carolina districts
- Court: Lawsuit alleging coerced confessions can go to trial
- Thai court drops royal insult charges against academic
- Russia court cancels journalist's deportation to Uzbekistan
- Judge to pick battlefield for court fight over Manson's body
- Court halts execution of Alabama inmate with dementia
- Warrant dropped for professor who spoke Hawaiian in court
- Court rules that Kushner firm must disclose partners' names
- Comedian Artie Lange arrested for skipping court
- Supreme Court declines gay rights work discrimination case
In a 4-2 decision, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled the industry-friendly rules set out by the 2012 law violated the state constitution, although the majority did not entirely agree on why they were unconstitutional.
Seven municipalities had challenged the law that grew out of the state's need to modernize 20-year-old drilling laws to account for a Marcellus Shale drilling boom made possible by innovations in technology, most notably horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. The process, also called fracking, has drawn widespread criticism from environmentalists and many residents living near drilling operations.
"Few could seriously dispute how remarkable a revolution is worked by this legislation upon the existing zoning regimen in Pennsylvania, including residential zones," wrote Chief Justice Ron Castille. He said the law's rules represented an unprecedented "displacement of prior planning, and derivative expectations, regarding land use, zoning, and enjoyment of property."
The high court's decision comes at a time when the energy industry is increasingly able to capture oil and gas from previously unreachable formations and, as a result, is bumping up against suburban and urban expectations of land use in states including Texas, Colorado and Ohio, where a similar legal challenge is underway.
The 2012 law restricted local municipalities' ability to control where companies may place rigs, waste pits, pipelines and compressor and processing stations, although the new zoning rules never went into effect because of court order after the towns sued. A narrowly divided lower court struck them down in 2012, but Corbett appealed, saying lawmakers have clear authority to override local zoning.
Legal News Media
Legal News is the top headline legal news provider for lawyers and legalprofessionals. Read law articles and breaking news from law firm's across the United States to get the latest updates. We reserve the right, at our discretion, to change, modify, add, or remove portions of the site at any time. Your This site is solely for your personal use. You are, of course, welcome to print or otherwise copy material from this site for your personal use. However, you may not distribute, exchange, modify, sell or transmit anything you copy from this Site, including but not limited to any text, images, audio and video, for any business, commercial or public purpose. Any unauthorized use of the text, images, audio and video may violate copyright laws, trademark laws, the laws of privacy and publicity and civil and criminal statutes.