Pike County Farm Bureau Opposes Grain Belt Express
March 24th 2015
At their meeting on Wednesday, March 11, the Pike County Farm Bureau Board of Directors voted to oppose the Grain Belt Express Clean Line (GBECL) transmission line which is slated to run through Pike County. The Farm Bureau does not want GBECL to be granted either public utility status or eminent domain authority from the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC).
Grain Belt Express has not yet filed its application with the ICC. The company has stated it will seek a ‘certificate of necessity’ from the ICC which is of significant concern to the organization. Using the expedited review method significantly constricts regulatory oversight and review and restricts landowner rights to object to route revisions.
The Board of Directors stated in its reasons to oppose the project that GBECL is not a public utility, has not shown how the project will benefit the State of Illinois and that the company has not proposed the most direct route from proposed wind farms in Kansas to energy markets to the east.
The Pike County Farm Bureau will assist its members who oppose the GBECL project, work with groups of land owners opposing the GBECL project, provide the good offices of the Pike County Farm Bureau to achieve the desired outcomes and seek Illinois Farm Bureau’s opposition to the GBECL project.
Farm Bureau will continue to assist its members in providing information on easements and other aspects of the project.
More information can be found at www.tworiversfarmbureau.org in the documents section including a presentation by Laura Harmon, Senior Counsel, Illinois Farm Bureau on the ICC process and land owner rights and a list of attorneys who have represented farmers and landowners in cases before the Illinois Commerce Commission.