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Gas Line Easement

Not sure where to post this but would like to get some feed back on guys who recently had new transmission lines installed on there property. We are in the path of where Rover wants to install 2- 42" gas lines with a 60' permanent right of way and 200' temporary work right of way. We have about 3100' of total line that angles across our property and onto another one of our property's. We have been less than impressed with Rover from everything from the the offers to the inability to give us a plan to fix our systematic tile system. We met with land stewards mid July to put a plan together for fixing tile and were told we would hear back in a week and now its mid November, still no response. We have a lawyer who says they have under budgeted for tile repair and really have not installed gas line in an area like Ohio with so many tile installed. Tile is really the life of these farms and really adds to our bottom line. Now Rover says they won't get tile plans back until we sign a lease. Obviously anyone with common sense knows this a joke. Even the Rover rep admitted they have not experienced a state like Ohio with so many tile to work with. We have worked with other natural gas line installations on other farms we own and know even with things in writing it is hard to get them to do whats in writing let alone if a problem comes up after they leave. It takes a lawyer to enforce the lease and you just end up fixing the problem yourself. The lawyers seem fine with the status quo and the representative from Farm Bureau wasn't a lot more help. If we felt compensation was fair living with some minor problems wouldn't be such a big deal. Rover said they have about 25% of the line signed up and normally have 50% plus at this time. So I don't think we are the only ones thinking this isn't a good deal. We benefit in no way from this line. We cannot get gas for our farms, homes, or livestock barns even though it passes right past my propane dryer. Was wondering mainly how to get leverage against this gas company to get fair compensation since stopping it seems like a long shot. Who do us landowners contact to get more awareness about our concerns? Any ideas or experiences are appreciated and sorry for the ramblings its hard to get my thoughts straight on this. If your willing to share what you received for an easement with the size of line and width of line that would be appreciated.


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Senior Contributor

Re: Gas Line Easement

A "pipeliner" friend told me the best ammo a landowner has is the threat of getting environmentalalists involved.
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Re: Gas Line Easement

We had a pipeline go through our family farm when I was young, many years ago, so I don't remember any of the specifics.  Ours did not affect tile lines.  This line went over a hill and the question is how much soil cover is there.  That field was sold off many years ago and I don't own or have access to it so I can't answer my own question.  I have not heard of any pipeline problems around here.


When a pipeline goes through, you will have much more scrutiny on excavations.  In Iowa, we are required to notify the state 48 hours before planning to dig.  Big fines that are real if one is caught avoiding that.  If Ohio has a similar law, you will end up with that number on speed dial if you do any trenching, tiling, fencing, drilling, bulldozing, landscaping, tree removal, etc. if the dig is more than some inches deep.  Not a huge deal, just one more little annoyance when you want to do something.  Contractors are so paranoid about it some won't even put in a sidewalk without One-Call.


An interstate went across the back of our farm 50 years ago and we've had tile issues from that.  Our field sloped down about two miles to a creek.  The intersate went across the slope down where it started to flatten out.  The interstate cut a bunch of tiles and to this day I dont' know if they were all hooked up or not.  The DOT was not impossible to work with, but everything just takes time.  You're on their schedule, and it may well not fit with your cropping season.  You have to be nice to them know.


My first impression about getting envirionmentalists involved is be careful who you get in bed with.  You may have to live with their agenda.  If they discover some rare species that wil keep a pipeline out, it might keep a planter out, too.  


I'm not joking, if it is a big issue maybe the best thing to do is consider selling off that field or farm and getting a different one.  Of course, who's to say they won't follow you and pipeline your new farm, too.  


Can you live with it?  Probably.


An issue - talk with your lawyers and CPA about any payments.  My uncle took the DOT to court, got more money, and had to pay taxes on it.  My dad got the DOT to pay more in damages and it was taxed more favorably.


We may or may not be able to help you on this wweb site, but you are right to be investigating broadly as to your rights and options.  Good luck.



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