The AES Corp. has provided a $10,000 deposit to the West Virginia Department of Transportation to assist in several ways with the construction of a haul road for transporting wind turbines to be placed on Laurel Mountain in Randolph and Barbour counties. In response to our letter objecting that this assistance in the purchase of right-of-way could be perceived as eminent domain, West Virginia highway engineer Marvin G. Murphy responded that AES is a public utility and has the right of eminent domain. However, even AES clearly stated in its application to the West Virginia Public Service Commission to construct a wind project (Case No. 08-0109-E-CS) that it is not a public utility.
We have notified the West Virginia Attorney General about our concerns and we trust he will request that landowners be made aware of their rights.
5 April 2008
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