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Could Stricter Laws Scare Fracking Company Away?

ST. TAMMANY PARISH (WGNO) - St. Tammany Parish wants new laws enacted to protect health and the environment against a fracking company looking to drill.

Parish President Pat Brister has laid out a list of eight ordinances, some higher than state regulations, to combat Helis Energy’s plans to drill a fracking oil well on a 960-acre tract near Mandeville.

Related: Helis Offers Fracking Compromise in St. Tammany

Proposed ordinances include restrictions on truck traffic, noise, air and water pollutions.

In June the Department of Natural Resources will decide on a permit allowing the company to drill 13,000 feet down, hydraulically fracture the rock then extract oil.

Neighbor Michael Myhao hopes more stringent demands are a ploy to scare the fracking company away, “To create such ridiculous restrictions and obstacles, then a company would just say it’s too expensive and a pain in the neck to do business here, we’re going to choose another site.”

“Water is my biggest concern,” says neighbor Lisa Larson. “You don’t know what you’re drinking. You don’t know any of that. And they’re not going to tell you.

The parish president says there’s potential for many high paying jobs and economic growth if oil is discovered.”