Tuesday,  December 1, 2009 2:54 AM

The issue of whether to allow home rule to determine casino placement comes at a time when this very issue is being debated in the Senate on another bill. Sen. David Goodman, R-New Albany, said, "We don't want folks in Cuyahoga County and Hamilton County deciding zoning issues for Franklin County."

I wonder whether he and Gov. Ted Strickland are aware that Franklin County is now making zoning decisions for other Ohio counties, via the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, on locating oil and gas wells. Due to a loophole in the current law, energy companies are placing these high-pressure chemical sites in residential areas 100 feet from homes and even closer to outdoor public areas despite desperate pleas that the locations be approved locally for placement in more appropriately zoned areas.

Senate Bill 165, proposed by Sen. Tom Niehaus, R-New Richmond, to reform oil and gas law, undermines the legitimate interests of local communities and their constitutionally authorized local control over local concerns.

We hope the governor will veto this type of legislation as promised in the casino issue until amendments provide for adequate local control and respect of zoning in placement of oil and gas wells.