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Walker v. Husted

ELR Citation: 45 ELR 20173
Nos. 2015-OHIO-3749, (Ohio, 09/16/2015)

The Supreme Court of Ohio upheld the Ohio Secretary of State's invalidation of three county ballot measures that, if approved by voters, would have banned high-volume hydraulic fracturing as a method of oil and gas extraction in those jurisdictions. Despite the secretary's conclusion to the contrary, the state constitution does not allow him to invalidate charter petitions based on his assessment of the legality or constitutionality of the measures. Nevertheless, the charters do not satisfy the threshold requirements that define a charter initiative. The petitions fail to create an "alternative form of government" as required by state law because they do not provide for any meaningful change in the structure of county government. As such, the secretary's decision was ultimately upheld.