pumping oil

Voters in Hermosa Beach will decide Tuesday whether to support a proposed oil-drilling project in the city, while La Habra Heights residents will consider restrictions on fracking and ban the drilling of new wells.

Hermosa Beach’s Measure O would allow a drilling project proposed by E&B Natural Resources Management Corp., with proponents contending in a ballot argument that the project could generate “hundreds of millions of dollars of new revenue,” that could be used to hire firefighters and police officers, while upgrading the city’s infrastructure.

Backers insisted that the drilling proposal will not involve fracking or off-shore drilling platforms and “no permanent equipment visible above the walls at the currently contaminated city maintenance yard.”

Opponents of the project, however, argue the project will include a roughly nine-story-tall drilling rig, 30 oil and gas wells and miles of dangerous underground pipelines that will “threaten our quality of life and our health.”

They contend the project will lead to increased air pollution, and also claim any accidents at the drilling site could endanger lives.

In La Habra Heights, meanwhile, voters will consider Measure A, which would bar the drilling of new wells and the use of certain drilling techniques, most notably fracking. Proponents say fracking presents a health risk to residents, but opponents contend such a ban would mean a severe limiting or end to any drilling in the city, costing the municipal coffers about $370,000 a year — or about 13 percent of the general fund.

—City News Service

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