Audio: Farm interests applaud new eminent domain restrictions in Missouri

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Missouri lawmakers ended the session with changes to eminent domain laws. House Bill 2005 sponsor Mike Haffner led the effort – triggered when a private electric transmission line project was permitted to cross the state.

 

 

The bill now limits eminent domain use by private companies to acquire land, but Missouri Cattlemen’s Executive Vice President Mike Deering says the legislation isn’t perfect.

 

 

Deering says a retroactive bill wouldn’t pass the Senate, so the Grain Belt express project was not blocked. Northern Missouri landowners resisted the use of eminent domain for the Grain Belt Express project.

Nicole Luckey, Senior Vice President of energy tech company Invenergy who is operating the Grain Belt Express project, says the bill is a ‘win-win for because Missourians are promised to save at least $12 million in annual energy costs…as the energy company will also provide power to rural Missouri.

The legislation stipulates land acquired using eminent domain in the state must be purchased at 150 percent market value. Deering says it also ensures future energy projects in Missouri must provide power in the state.

 

 

The bill was carried in the Senate by Jason Bean and now goes to Governor Mike Parson to be signed.