** UPDATE JULY 25, 2017**
Our leave to appeal to Michigan Supreme Court was denied. Which means we must continue to collect signatures until we have all 252,523 required signatures, submit them to the State, and then file a new lawsuit to challenge the unconstitutionality of the 180-day signature gathering law. This is what the courts are telling us to do, saying essentially, we filed too soon. We don't agree with the decision. We certainly provided all the right legal arguments and facts to show that our case IS RIPE right now. But it is at this time our only course of action to a win.
We take this as a CALL TO ACTION to all volunteers to not give up. The only way we win, is if we PERSIST, collect the signatures, and win in court. The laws and court precedents are all on our side. Our case was not yet heard.
Let's WIN this and LET'S BAN FRACKING!
** UPDATE JUNE 8, 2017**
We filed a Leave to Appeal in the Michigan Supreme Court.
We filed a lawsuit on June 1, 2016 against the Director of Elections, Secretary of State, and Board of State Canvassers, challenging the constitutionality of the statute (MCL 168.472a) that imposes a time limitation on signature-gathering. Shortly thereafter, Governor Snyder signed a new version of the law making the 180-day limit absolute. The Court of Claims ruled that our case was not yet "ripe"--essentially that we filed too soon, because we have not yet submitted our signatures to the State. We, of course, argued that the case is ripe right now, because the "actual controversy" at hand is not whether we will collect all the signatures necessary, but that the State will not accept signatures older than 180 days. We took it to the Court of Appeals. That court upheld the lower court's decision. We filed a motion for reconsideration, and that was denied.
We filed a Leave to Appeal with the Michigan Supreme Court.
On July 25, 2017, the Michigan Supreme Court denied our appeal.
Therefore, the only course of action we now have is to follow what the court is saying and continue to collect all of our signatures, when we get enough signatures, file them with the State of Michigan, and
You can also look up all documents on the state court's website: courts.mi.gov. Our case # in the Court of Appeals is #334480, Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan v Director of Elections.
Read the court filings by clicking on the documents below:
Exhibits available on request.
On June 22, the State filed a motion and brief for summary disposition:
We filed our response to their motion on July 8:
On August 8, 2016, Judge Stephen Borrello, Court of Claims, held that the case was not yet "ripe":
August 8, 2016 Decision by Judge Stephen Borrello
On September 23, 2016, Committee to Ban Fracking filed its first brief in the Michigan Court of Appeals fighting the ripeness decision:
On November 12, 2016 we filed a reply brief:
On March 14, 2017, the Court of Appeals decided the case and upheld the lower court decision that the case was not yet "ripe":
On April 4, 2017, we filed a motion for reconsideration:
On April 18, 2017 the State filed a reply to our motion:
On April 26, 2017 the Court of Appeals denied our motion for reconsideration:
On June 8, 2017, we filed a Leave to Appeal with the Michigan Supreme Court
On July 25, 2017, the Michigan Supreme Court denied our leave to appeal.