Wood Co. residents voice pipeline concerns - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Wood Co. residents voice pipeline concerns

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WOOD COUNTY (WAOW) -

Dozens of people packed a room in the Wood Co. Courthouse Tuesday morning.

They were asking the Board of Supervisors to vote yes on a resolution that would recommend state lawmakers reform eminent domain laws. Those laws allow the government to buy people's land without their permission.

"What we want is reform of eminent domain law so that Enbridge, a privately owned company, does not have this hammer of eminent domain over us," said Mark Borchardt. He's the founder of 80 Feet is Enough, a group dedicated to stopping more pipelines.

Many supporters of the resolution said they already have three Enbridge pipelines on their property, and one more would take away the use of most of their land.

"I really find it strange that a private company from Canada that's here for profit can run these pipelines through our country," said Margy Hansen of Marshfield.

However, Enbridge said there are no plans to build a new pipeline.

"Some are under the false assumption that we do and that's simply not the case," said Scott Suder, a representative from Enbridge.

Yet Borchardt said Enbridge presented a map to investors up until January, showing a new line through the badger state.

"Once we learned of that slide, once we started sharing it, that slide got pulled from the presentation," Borchardt said.

"We did do surveys back a number of years ago," Suder said. "But as any company does, we forecast and we looked at it. But that is not based upon a new project that was imminent."

The Board of Supervisors passed the resolution to ask state lawmakers to reform eminent domain laws, 10-8. Supporters of the resolution said they'll continue fighting to get the laws changed.

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