A key House member says now is the time to pass a moratorium to prevent developers from seeking government condemnation of land along proposed carbon pipeline routes before February 1st. Senator Dennis Guth of Klemme recently told KIOW that the plan does absolutely nothing, because the Iowa Utilities Board process for eminent domain wouldn’t start before next February anyway. Representative Bobby Kaufmann of Wilton disagrees.
Guth told KIOW he’s been assured by the chair of the Iowa Utilities Board that the rules for seeking eminent domain would stretch the process out well into next year. Kaufmann says the point of the House proposal is to address the fears of property owners who do not want the pipelines to pass through their land or feel pressured to sign leases with the developers.
Kaufmann says the moratorium, which would be in effect while the legislature is not in session, is designed to send a message to the pipeline developers, too.
Senator Guth told KIOW he’s working with Senate leaders and others to develop a long-term fix to present in the 2023 legislative session, to limit the broad use of eminent domain for private sector projects. The Senate has not yet taken a vote on the bill that includes the temporary moratorium on the subject that House members have approved.