It’s just a resolution, but if passed by the Georgia House, the same that voted 128 to 34 to deny river-drilling easements to Sabal Trail, it will send a message to Congress. Maybe Florida’s statehouse would like to pass a similar resolution.
LC 34 5041
House Resolution 289
By: Representatives Dunahoo of the 30th, Quick of the 117th, McCall of the 33rd, Caldwell of the 20th, Raffensperger of the 50th, and others
WHEREAS, the Georgia House of Representatives and Georgia Senate are concerned about the disastrous impact unrestrained use of eminent domain has on the private property rights of the citizens of Georgia; and
WHEREAS, America’s Founding Fathers clearly understood that private property rights were the foundation, not only of prosperity, but of freedom itself; and
WHEREAS, the common law, state law, and the United States Constitution were written to protect property rights, including the rights of people to freely acquire, use, and dispose of property; and
WHEREAS, due to the explosion of governmental legislation and regulations, private property rights have been seriously compromised, particularly through the use of an archaic doctrine, eminent domain, to justify the seizure of private property; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to the Federal Natural Gas Act, if the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves a pipeline project and no agreement with the landowner is reached, the company may acquire the easement under eminent domain, a right given to the company by statute to take private land for Commission authorized use, with a court determining compensation; and
WHEREAS, allowing a natural gas company to take private property from a landowner without his or her consent tramples on the private property rights that are a foundation of our liberty.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED AND ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA that Congress should amend the Federal Natural Gas Act to remove provisions allowing the use of eminent domain to seize property for purposes of building a pipeline.
-jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®
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