Acting Supreme Court Justice Donald F. Cerio, Jr. has handed down his decision on the Otsego County case of Cooperstown Holstein Corporation vs. the Town of Middlefield, upholding the right of the municipality to keep its zoning, which excludes hydrofracking. The idea of “supercession” that gas companies postulated barred localities from enforcing such land use laws in the case of gas drilling suffered its second judicial defeat this week. To quote the decision in favor of Middlefield:
Therefore, it is evident that the supercession clause included in ECL 23-0303(2) does not serve to preempt a local municipality such as defendent from enacting land use regulation within the confines of its geographical jurisdiction, and, as such, local municpalities are permitted to permit or prohibit oil, gas and solution mining or drilling in conformity with suchconstitutional and statutory authority.
UPDATE: News coverage begins in Oneonta, and echoes back from across the US and even Britain. Link to the decision itself also below.