February 25, 2012

About that takings claim

I really didn't think Anschutz would live up to its bluster, and I'm mostly surprised they folded this argument so quickly:

Although early reports (NYTimes 2/02/2012) quoted West saying Anschutz could sue Dryden under "takings" law, West said February 22 in an interview with the Dryden Courier, "I don't know that they (Anschutz) would pursue a takings claim at this point. I do think we will see a takings claim somewhere in New York State."

My guess on that last sentence is that West is hoping not to endure the personal embarrassment of filing such a claim himself, but maybe he just prefers to leave the vague threat out there.

After yesterday's Middlefield loss, he did offer up a polarizing quote:

"This is really the kiss of death for drilling in New York," West said in an interview. "No prudent operator is going to invest in leases in New York if those leases are at the mercy of a zoning ban."

For many opponents of drilling, that sounds all right. For supporters, even in places that haven't passed bans, that's a call to arms to make sure no place can ban it. He may lose cases and bluster a lot, but West does seem to know how to keep industry supporters motivated.

His current path forward? Appealing the Dryden and Middlefield rulings:

"We're looking forward to getting the issue before the appellate court," said Thomas S. West, one of the lawyers representing the plaintiffs in both cases.

Update: If you still want takings bluster, another law firm is offering it.

Posted by simon at February 25, 2012 6:14 AM in ,
Note on photos