Nearly 100 protesters gathered Tuesday at the State Capitol for an “Earth (Quake) Rally” sponsored by the Sierra Club and other activists fighting for more regulations on the oil and gas industry to stop the plague of earthquakes in the state.
They heard from a long list of speakers, including Little Rock, Arkansas attorney Scott Poynter who filed the first earthquake lawsuit in the state stemming from damages and injuries suffered in the 2011 Prague earthquake. He told the crowd it’s vital for them to put their money into candidates who will represent them in the state government, including Rep. Richard Morrissette, a Democrat running for the Corporation Commission.
Poynter ended up before the State Supreme Court in his lawsuit filed in Lincoln County District Court and won the right to have the suit go to trial at the local level.
“I want a local jury to decide a local issue,” said Poynter in explaining why he will fight to keep the earthquake lawsuits in local district courts.
But he also admitted it is a difficult fight in the legislature.
“We’re fighting an uphill battle with them and we need some political relief,” he told the crowd. “You have to register to vote and we have to have people like Rep. Morrissette.”
Listen to Poynter’s comments.