Some friends have two oil pipelines running through their land. Soon Enbridge will want a new easement for a third pipeline. Besides being a threat to our water, air, and land, the pipeline companies are a threat to private ownership. When the owners negotiate an easement contract, the company has the power of eminent domain. If someone doesn't agree to the terms, the company can say, "We can take it, and let a judge decide how much you'll get."
When an average company wants to buy or use your land, they actually have to negotiate. Under Wisconsin law oil pipeline companies get to use eminent domain for private gain. This could change if readers contact their Columbia County Board Supervisor and urge them to vote yes on the resolution before them at their 9:45 a.m. meeting Wednesday.
It asks the state Legislature to get rid of eminent domain for private gain for oil pipeline companies. Five other counties have done this. Ours should do the same.
Charles Bradley, Portage