Landowners sue Bayou Bridge, claiming pipeline company improperly seized private land

September 12, 2018
The Advocate

...Property owners filed new documents in St. Martin Parish on Wednesday that question whether oil companies may take land at all. The Louisiana constitution allows gas pipeline builders to seize property under eminent domain, but only after a public hearing and upon receiving clearance from the state Department of Natural Resources, attorney Pam Spees, of the Center for Constitutional Rights, said in an interview.


However, there aren't any rules on the books for how oil pipelines are regulated when oil companies want to take land under eminent domain, she said. Part of the lawsuit challenges what Spees described as a void in the state statute.

"Oil pipelines can just go ahead and start (construction activity on private land). … They don't have to have any certification before they start expropriating,” she said. "Unless a landowner holds out and takes it to court, there's no check on this anywhere." ...

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Last modified 

September 14, 2018