Urgent Action Needed Immediately!
Do you want to give the oil & gas and toxic sludge pipeline companies eminent domain powers over your land and water? Apparently, our elected representatives believe these high impact private interest companies should.
Pipeline bill passes House committee
Judiciary Committee held lengthy hearing on eminent domain issues for pipeline companies
The House Judiciary Committee late Thursday gave narrow approval to a bill to grant eminent domain authority to petroleum pipeline companies when they seek rights-of-way for building pipelines. But the 6-5 vote was much closer than the numbers would indicate; three of the “yes” votes came from members who said they would support the bill “for now,” meaning the bill will be in for changes when it comes to the House floor for debate.
Senate Bill 14-093 and its 2013 predecessors have gone through three different committees in the House and/or Senate in the past two sessions: Agriculture, Local Government and on Thursday, Judiciary. Each committee has looked at the bill from different perspectives.
The Judiciary committee looked at SB 93 on the eminent domain issue, but members also raised concerns that most Colorado counties appear to lack any kind of process for approving pipeline locations, or siting.
Changes to SB 93 will likely touch on the local control issue. During committee testimony, member Rep. Mike McLachlan (D-Durango) noted that his home county, LaPlata, has an extensive review process for pipeline siting. Adams County Commissioner Charles “Chaz” Tedesco, whose board does not support SB 93, testified that his county also has a review process for pipeline siting.
But the state’s number one county for oil and gas production, Weld County, has no approval process, and that’s partly what led to the lawsuit and the 2012 Colorado Supreme Court decision that decided that petroleum pipeline companies did not have eminent domain rights …
Click here to read a memo explaining why SB-093 is unconstitutional.
The Colorado House of Representatives will be voting on SB14-093 on Tuesday, March 18!
They need to get an AVALANCHE of calls and emails opposed to this odious bill, that would overturn a Colorado Supreme Court ruling and diminish private property owner rights (yours and mine), to give private for profit (i.e., not utility lines) pipeline corporations the right of eminent domain.
Call Representatives of both parties, the majority of both parties are supporting oil & gas instead of the people of Colorado!
Tell them to vote no on the odious SB14-093 and that you will be listening to the debate on Tuesday, 3/18/2014 to hear their voiced opposition to the bill and in support of the rights of Coloradans and the principles of our Colorado constitution.
Rep Bob Rankin 303-866-2949
Sen Randy Baumgardner 303-866-5292
Rep Diane Mitsch Bush 303-866-2923
Sen Gail Schwartz 303-866-4871
Speaker of the House Mark Ferrandino
The bill’s sponsor in the House and Senate : Rep May 303-866-2945
Here is the list of the 10 Senators who voted AGAINST the bill in the Senate, where it passed by majority vote: Aguilar, Brophy, Herpin, Hill, Jones, Kefalas, Lambert, Lundberger, Marble, Gravera.
Unless, you’re Senator’s name is on the list, they voted to “YES” on SB 14-093. And that includes SENATE PRESIDENT MORGAN CARROLL.
Let your Senators know how displeased you are with their vote for profit over people, corporate rights over rights reserved to the people.
Sample letter below for emails. Time is of the essence. The vote happens Tuesday 3/18/2014.
Dear Representative ______________,
In 2012 the Colorado’s Supreme Court ruled that corporations seeking to build for profit pipelines (as opposed to utility pipelines) do not have any powers of eminent domain, despite their claims that they did. This was a wise decision, affirming that the role of eminent domain should be reserved to governments for clear instances of public projects and voiding any such putative powers for private pipeline corporations. Essentially, including a private interest commodity would change Colorado’s governing system, which would require an amendment to the Constitution, not a legislative statute giving eminent domain powers.
SB 14-093 is an unfortunate legislative resurrection of this issue, seeking to legislatively overturn the CO Supreme Court ruling and give private pipeline corporations the power of eminent domain denied by the court. This is a case of the legislature seeking to expand corporate power and diminish private property rights of the people. The fact that it includes the power to establish eminent domain, a power contentious even for governments, makes it all the more odious.
Colorado residents from all sides of the political spectrum are adamantly opposed to the bill. On this issue I and most Coloradans side with Weld County Commissioner Barbara Kirkmayer who went on record saying that the bill “is an infringement of public right of way for a private, for-profit company (that is not a utility)”.
Eminent domain means “supreme lordship” in Latin. Don’t be on the wrong side of history, granting supreme lordship to private pipeline companies and diminishing private property rights.
We will all be listening to the House debate tomorrow to see which of our representatives will be speaking out against the bill and thus against the elevation of private profit over rights reserved to the people of our state.
Or use this link:
Stop Eminent Domain for Oil and Gas Pipelines, stop SB14-093