I am on the board of the Preservation of Rural Iowa Alliance, a nonprofit organization formed to opposed the transmission line proposed by Rock Island Clean Line, or RICL. The intended 375-mile route through Iowa will need to get land through eminent domain if they are to succeed with their plan.
Do we let a private company use eminent domain for a project through prime Iowa farmland? A majority of folks who contact us do not want this line on their property, no matter what payment is offered. They say they won’t sign, and it will have to be taken by condemnation.
Land agents for RICL will be out there trying to get the voluntary easements. Have an attorney look these agreements over. Confer with other family members. Better yet – don’t sign if you are against this line! It isn’t over by a long shot. RICL has much to accomplish before, or if ever, they are granted their franchise by the Iowa Utilities Board. These easements are forever, folks.
We of the Preservation are not opposed to wind energy. Our Iowa utilities are doing a fine job of developing wind energy. The people of our state will get greater benefit from them than anything RICL has to offer.
For some excellent information concerning the easements being offered by RICL, go to www.calt.iastate.edu. Roger McEowen and Kristine Tidgren of the Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation have a podcast explaining what to consider as landowners.