SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) – A Southfield church is facing yet another roadblock in its effort to drill for oil.
On Monday Southfield City Council passed an ordinance that stipulates where drilling should take place — effectively blocking the church’s efforts to drill on their property.READ MORE: Michigan Reports 5,616 New COVID-19 Cases, 68 Deaths
The revised ordinance prevents drilling in residential neighborhoods – which is where Word of Faith Christian Center Church is located.
“It’s the city’s position that that is not a compatible use in a residential area – we have seen in the Word of Faith request for drilling that the DEQ granted the permit request – that is zoned in a residential area,” said city spokesperson Michael Manion.
The city’s ordinance is at odds with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) which granted a license.READ MORE: Detroit Police Seek Assistance Locating Suspect Wanted For Critical Assault
Manion says that there are a number of residents in the area on well water and contaminated ground water is a concern along with other environmental concerns including noise and protected wetlands that come into play.
“That’s been the thousand dollar question,” says Manion about rights, “we’ve had the DEQ say that they don’t typically supercede local ordinances but, yet in this case, there was a moritorium in place, the city had already – that would actually be expiring at the end of this month. And this new ordinance now has gone into effect.”
Most likely the decision to move forward or not with drilling will come down to the courts weighing-in.
An Oakland County circuit court judge which granted a restraining order weeks ago — is expected to decide.MORE NEWS: FBI Asks Public's Help After Explosives Found In N. Michigan
Word of Faith is located in Southfield in the 9 Mile and Evergreen area.