City News

Posted on: January 16, 2018

CELDF Public Interview Meeting scheduled for March 5

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The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELFD) has verbally offered to provide free legal service to the City of Lafayette in the event City Council would decide to cite the Lafayette Climate Bill of Rights to justify implementing a ban on oil and gas development (fracking) within city limits.

Because the Colorado Supreme Court and other U.S. courts have consistently ruled that local municipalities do not have the right to place bans on oil and gas operations, a lawsuit will undoubtedly be brought against the City. In 2013, the City of Lafayette passed a ballot initiative banning corporations from establishing new oil and gas wells within city limits.  The City was subsequently sued, and lost.

The City’s attorney and special outside counsel on oil and gas have shared their opinion that any action by CELDF to defend a Lafayette Bill of Rights ban on oil and gas would not prevail, and would trigger additional costly actions against the City.  The City’s municipal insurance carrier has stated they would limit Lafayette’s liability coverage if a ban were to be implemented.

Request for a Public Interview Process
City Council has received requests from the public to consider this pro-bono offer from CELDF.  Council will consider the pros and cons of this partnership through the following public processes:

  1. CELDF will respond to a list of questions submitted to them from the City Administrator and attorney by February 26.  These answers will be posted online for public review at www.cityoflafayette.com/OilAndGas.
  2. A Public Interview Meeting will be held on Monday, March 5, at the Lafayette Library from 7:00-8:30pm. CELDF will provide a brief presentation followed by interview questions from the community.  This interview process will be televised live on Channel 8 and www.cityoflafayette.com/StreamingVideo.  A recorded version will be available on-demand at www.cityoflafayette.com/StreamingVideo.
  3. On March 5, prior to the Public Interview Meeting, City Council will meet with CELDF and the City attorney in executive session from 5:30-6:45pm.


Interview questions from Lafayette residents

Lafayette residents unable to attend the March 5 Public Interview Meeting are encouraged to submit interview questions online by March 4 at www.cityoflafayette.com/CELDFinterview. These questions will be posed to CELDF during the March 5 public interview.  Every effort will be made to include as many submitted questions as possible.  Questions should concentrate on acquiring information that will assist City Council to;

  • determine the appropriateness of a CELDF partnership
  • determine the breadth of CELDF’s expertise
  • determine CELDF’s probability of success based on past experience
  • weigh the pros/cons of spending additional taxpayer dollars over and above legal fees to defend an adverse ruling

Residents in attendance at the March 5 Public Interview Meeting will be allowed to ask interview questions of CELDF.  Interested participants may sign up at the meeting to ask a question of the CELDF staff in attendance.  Questions will be required to concentrate on acquiring information that will assist City Council to;

  • determine the appropriateness of a CELDF partnership
  • determine the breadth of CELDF’s expertise
  • determine CELDF’s probability of success based on past experience
  • weigh the pros/cons of spending additional taxpayer dollars over and above legal fees to defend an adverse ruling

To learn more about City Council's activities regarding oil and gas in Lafayette, please visit www.cityoflafayette.com/OilAndGas.


CELDF Public Interview Meeting
Monday, March 5, 2018

7:00-8:30pm
Lafayette Public Library / 775 W. Baseline Rd.

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