To the editor,
Thank you to David Kruse (column in July 11 issue) for stating his problems with the Rock Island Clean Line.
It is presumptuous of businesses like RICL to assume they will get the same right of eminent domain that communities which used it as a last resort to make sure that everyone has access to utilities.
The east coast does not need our wind power. Its abundance of electricity makes their electric rates even lower than ours.( www.energy.gov.) There is only a desire to sell power. That is commerce.
If the world needs food and we grow corn we must pay to get that corn to market. If you want to sell electricity you must pay RICL to get it to market for you.
RICL needs land to build its power lines and it doesn’t own any. They need to buy and negotiate land rights and if it can’t afford to, maybe they shouldn’t do it.
That is what happens on our farm. If we can’t afford it, we don’t do it.
People have said power lines should be like highways – not privately owned or built by investors for profit. Everyone can use them, they are public.
If the compensation that RICL is offering was fair, then it would have more than 10 percent of its easements signed.
Owners of wind turbines are paid yearly. The people that have to live for the rest of their lives with 15-story transmission lines get a one-time check – of which the government will take a nice chunk.
Will the wind farms offer to pay more money to set up their road to market? Most businesses have a large up-front expense. What makes wind power any different?
The Preservation of Rural Iowa Alliance is working hard to stop RICL and protect the rights of landowners.
The Alliance is against the use of eminent domain to take private property for economic gain.
We encourage people not to sign RICL’s voluntary easements and to file a formal objection with the Iowa Utilities Board.
For more information contact PRIA at www.iowastopricl.com or (712) 262-5229.
Janna and Paul Swanson
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