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Fracking Debate Heats Up Ahead of Election

By Sam Jones By Benjy Jeffords

Story Created: Mar 11, 2014 at 10:09 PM CDT

Story Updated: Mar 11, 2014 at 10:44 PM CDT

JOHNSON COUNTY– The primary election is a week away, and voters in one local county will weigh in on an anti-fracking referendum.

Emotions are running high in the debate. Both sides are very passionate as they scramble for last minute support. The crux of this disagreement is that ballot initiative, which lets residents vote for or against hydraulic fracturing.

The two sides are questioning each other’s motives and suggesting groups from outside the county are trying to influence the vote.

Fracking may be legal in Illinois, but some residents want to make Johnson County the exception to that law, through an anti-fracking referendum.  Annette McMichael is one of them.

“It’s very simple. Vote yes, ban franking. It’s as simple as that. If you’re against fracking, vote yes,” she said..

McMichaels is part of the Johnson County Community Group that hopes to show residents’ disapproval of hydraulic fracturing. Their goal is to ultimately pass a community bill of rights to ban the drilling practice in the county.

“What we want to do is send a message to the three commissioners; the people of Johnson County do not want fracking,” explained McMichael.

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