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AAA  Jul. 16, 2014 4:00 AM ET
North Texas city rejects partial fracking ban
By EMILY SCHMALL, Associated Press THE ASSOCIATED PRESS STATEMENT OF NEWS VALUES AND PRINCIPLES 
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Council member George Campbell, left rear, talks with Mayor Chris Watts as council persons Anita Burgess and Dalton Gregory right, listen to Former Texas Railroad Commission executive director John Tintara, at podium, speak at a public hearing at City Hall, Tuesday, July 15, 2014, in Denton, Texas. Current and former Texas officials have warned a North Texas city that it lacks the authority to enact a ban it's considering on hydraulic fracturing. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
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(AP) — The council governing a North Texas city that sits atop a large natural gas reserve has rejected a bid to ban further permitting of hydraulic fracturing.

Denton City Council members voted down a petition to outlaw new permits for the drilling practice. That's after more than 100 people spoke late Tuesday into Wednesday morning for and against the measure during a public hearing.

Fracking involves blasting a mix of water, sand and chemicals deep into underground rock formations to release trapped oil and gas.

Industry groups and state regulators warned such a ban could be followed by litigation and a severe hit to Denton's economy.

Petition supporters, some who came to tears while addressing the council, said the risks to human health and the environment outweighed the economic benefits.

Associated Press
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