This page includes information of particular importance to landowners.
With the cancellation of the ACP, we will continue our support of landowners who were in the pipeline’s path. Joyce Burton, our landowner liaison, will continue to help landowners as they try to figure out what the cancellation means for them in terms of the easements they have signed, what rights they now have (or don’t) over the land, what the legal situation is, etc. Landowners with questions should contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are separate sub-pages for:
- Eminent Domain
- Surveying and Access
- 2014-2015 Archives: Surveying and Access
- Friends of Nelson Letters to Landowners (2014-2015)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Below are links to two FAQ sheets. The first is a general one about the ACP and pipelines (why oppose them, promises about jobs and revenue, gas prices, safety, etc.). The other answers questions landowners may have (property values, easements, eminent domain, restrictions on your use of your property, etc.), and may help you understand the law and your private property rights (or lack thereof). Please note that Friends of Nelson is not providing legal advice, but hopes to provide information landowners may find helpful in making their own decisions about how to proceed.
Some Nelson landowners with property either on or close to the route have been contacted by Dominion’s contractors to ask for permission to inspect their buildings and/or wells. Friends of Nelson believes Dominion is trying to amass pre-construction data so that if landowners later complain that their foundations have cracked or their well is no longer producing as much good water, there will be a basis for comparison.
Although we recommend that people consult with their own lawyers about whether to allow these inspections (which are separate from the pipeline surveys authorized under VA Code 56-49.01), attorneys at Appalachian Mountain Advocates have said that they see little downside to allowing the inspections: if Dominion has a record from their own contractors that the water supply was good before the pipeline, it will be harder for them to shirk responsibility if wells go bad during/after construction.
However, we are also recommending that people INSIST on getting a copy of the report. That way, if there is anything that indicates existing problems, or somehow seems incorrect, they can arrange for re-testing with a different contractor on their own in order to confirm/refute the results.
Indeed, Friends of Nelson recommends that folks who are concerned about potential impacts to their water source get well-documented, baseline water data NOW. Then, if the pipeline is actually built, they should continue to monitor during construction and for a period afterwards.
With the support of Friends of Nelson and a number of other organizations, an excellent guide to water supply monitoring has been produced by Downstream Strategies. The guide is nearly 50 pages; note that the actual “How To” of monitoring starts on p.22, and there is also list of independent consultants that landowners can hire to do the work starting on p. 36.
If you have questions or want further information, please email email@example.com; give us your phone number so we can call you back.
The Virginia Easement Action Team (VEAT), sponsored by the Augusta County Alliance, has created an easement pledge to help landowners along to route of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) stand together to tell Dominion that they will not sign early easement offers. The VEAT states that, by signing the pledge to refuse early easement, landowners can accomplish the following objectives: (1) better protect your ability to get the best settlement for your property should Dominion be granted the power of eminent domain and have to meet you and your community team in court; (2) better protect your neighbors’ ability to get the best settlement as well; (3) by bringing landowners together you gain power in numbers and leverage resources; (4) lessen Dominion’s chances of receiving project approval and the power of eminent domain because FERC looks unfavorably on projects if large numbers of easements must be procured through the eminent domain process; (5) as a last resort, if Dominion gets approval for its project, you can collectively negotiate the best easement terms to protect property owners’ rights and interests.
You can learn more about the VEAT and the easement pledge by visiting the Augusta County Alliance’s Web page about the easement pledge.
Jun2014 FOOTage: Front Porch Pipeline Education Series
(a video series of real conversations with a
Right of Way Representative)
See our Songs, Stories, Videos, and Art page for the “Jun2014 FOOTage: Front Porch Pipeline Education Series,” six 1-2 minute video recordings, was made in June 2014 by Ms. Nelson County Landowner while talking with Mr. Dominion Right of Way Representative. Ms. Landowner asks questions, Mr. Representative provides some answers that would be hilarious if they were not so scary.
Much More Information….
Information on many topics related to the pipeline that is relevant and useful to both landowners and concerned citizens who do not own property on one of the proposed routes may be found on the following pages: