Saturday, February 27, 2010

Flower Mound files appeal for eminent domain suit

The Dallas Morning News had a brief article on the Mockingbird/Williams Barnett Gathering System vs Town of Flower Mound eminent domain case Friday. The town has filed an appeal with the Texas Court of Appeals. This will be a closely watched case. Read below.


The Town of Flower Mound is seeking a Texas Court of Appeals ruling on whether a natural gas pipeline company can acquire an easement on municipal property through eminent domain.

Williams Barnett Gathering System began condemnation proceedings last month after the Flower Mound Town Council turned down the company's request for a 30-foot pipeline easement at a fire station located at FM 1171 and Shiloh Road.

The town filed an appeal Friday after Denton County Probate Judge Don Windle ruled that his court has jurisdiction to hear the case.

While pipeline companies have used the eminent domain to acquire easements on private property, Flower Mound contends that it has immunity from lawsuits. The case may set a legal precedent in Texas.

"We believe it eventually will have far-reaching consequences around Texas," said attorney Robert Brown, who is representing Flower Mound in the case

Cross Timbers Gazette also had a great article on the court case. Click here to read.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

Pity really, that someone would have nothing better to do then stop people that may have had land in this area for so many years from benefiting from it. These things happen all of the time, all over the world, and even right down your street. Did you cry, when 2499 was put in or the mega Wal-Mart was built? I highly doubt it, although these projects affected the lives of land owners greatly. I'm sure you drive the road and shop those stores on occasion. Why would you even dare to hamper generations of land rights in this area? Just because you immigrated here and do not like it? Most of your comments are so far off track, (you probably keep you oil and gas book right next to Bambi) that someone needs to be policing you. I am related to a land owner that stands to gain so much from the land that has been in our family for so long. And by the way, more power to us. It is a sad thing that Americans have not changed that much over time. Some always feel the need to take over territory and make it how they want it. Ironice is it not, that "groups" like yours, and I use that term lightly, would distribute thousands of RED flyers on everyone's door in Flower Mound so they could blow around and trash up the town? I'm sorry, but I really do not get it.

Anonymous said...

That is town land being condemned which belongs to all of us, not just you. If they can find a private land owner who is willing (not forced) to give up their land, than more power to them. If you are willing to live by land owner rights are you will willing to die by them too? Many "mineral owners" are being forced into pools against their will, since you are such a "landowner" rights person, would you also stand for the land owner who does NOT want to sell their minerals or an easement on thier land or would you want the government to force this sale against their will? I've heard the "trash the town" with flyers and signs before, which I find quite funny. As if a temporary piece of paper on a door informing people, is more of an eyesore than multiple pieces of 4 acre tracts with rusting condesate tanks, pipes, and gravel, give me a break.

Anonymous said...

To 4:01 pm: You must not live in Flower Mound as the "Mega Wal-Mart" you are referring to is in Highland Village.

Anonymous said...

So you are a Native American? I'm pretty sure, if we are keeping score, that thye were here before you and it was their land first, after you "immigrated" to it. So, if you want to go back to the "generations of land rights in this area", let's go ALL the way back and give it back to them.

Anonymous said...

Personally I am sick of those whose mineral rights have been in the family for generations. Yes, you may have a right to your minerals, but those rights are not allowed to infringe on my rights to health. So, do what you want with your mineerals, but do it without poluting and poisoning the rest of us. It is a pretty sad day in America when some care about money more then hurting others.


And, no there is no walmart in flower mound. And some of us didn't like the 2499 was put in either. If you remember there was an outcry against it.

Anonymous said...

First to the genius who made the last post, as it is the funniest. You refer to the outcry against 2499? I was involved, with a lot mor at stake than you people. My friend, that had been going on for 25 years. The Outcry you refer to was everyone jumping on the bandwagon at the last minute, so do not lecture me about that. You then mentioned being sick of hearing about landowners rights? Forget you pal, that's how it goes. I believe those rights were earned many years ago, long before I can remember FM being a town of less than 2,000. Do you remember that?
Next, to the Native American comment. You have a VERY small point, no pun intended, but you totally missed the big picture there.
On to the comment regarding the Wal-Mart being in Highland Village. You should have gone first, because you totally missed the point. I was talking about the entirety of the sprawl on that corner, not just one store. Which by the way, half of is in FLOWER MOUND. Wow.
And finally to the first post. You made the most sense and I agree with some of what you said. You are correct in that if you are being forced to sell your "rights" you should put up a fight as that is not fair. But to those that are not in this group and are just moaning because they have to look at a gas rig for a few months, tough luck. Move somewhere else.

Watch for me.......

"The Knight of Justice"

Anonymous said...

First, we are not "moaning because we have to look at the rigs." The "rigs" and the whole process is dangeraous to my health. I am not fighting urban drilling because I don't like the look of it. It is fact that this process contaminates water and air.

"Forget you pal, that's how it goes." Well, your comment tells it all about those who own mineral rights - you all don't care what harm you do to people with these wells - as long as you get money. You are really sick, you know that. To honestly say that this is how it goes and forget the rest of us (as you pollute us and damage all of us - especially our kids). Truly sickening is what you are.

Anonymous said...

Watch for me.......

"The Knight of Justice"

Oh, some super hero! "The knight of Justice" (you have me laughing - kind of immature to give your self some dorky name) - Some justice - gas companies get rich off of citizens (who are polluted in the process!) Really, grow up. Maybe you can make a movie with you as the Knight Of Justice. But, I think your role is the bad guy. Sorry to let you know this - but harming peoples health is not justice.

Anonymous said...

@Knight of Justice - forget this, please explain to me how this is justice -- http://txsharon.blogspot.com/2010/02/aerial-photos-aruba-petroleum-barnett.html

Anonymous said...

@Knight of Justice - oddly enough I was glad to see that you acknowledged the hypocrisy of claiming property rights when someone who may be against this stands up for the very same property rights you speak about by fighting the "taking" of their property (mineral rights) against their will. At least you are reasonable in that regard. As far as the Native American comment, it wouldn't be seen as small to a Native American, in fact, they are still pretty pissed at BOTH of us for it I bet and since I missed the point, I would like you to articulate it again, because no one got it but you. So what exactly did you have stake on 2499 than was more than all of us, how can you even make that statement, you don't even know who it was, anymore than we know who you are?

Anonymous said...

Hmm, what big piece of property are they wanting to drill on that is on 2499? Gee, the stake you have couldn't be Hilliard could it?

Xnuiem said...

I don't understand. I thought we just passed a law in Sept. that banned anyone other than government for using ED for anything. And even then it must be for the common good and common use (tax dollars don't count anymore). Doesn't that apply here?

Anonymous said...

A very good point Xnuiem, but even when over 81% of Texans voted for it, you must still defend your rights, especially when O&G is in the room. For those who are unfamiliar, here is the text of the Texas constitutional change that was made (pipeline companies are exempt)...BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
ARTICLE 1.
SECTION 1.01. Section 17, Article I, Texas Constitution, is amended to read as follows:
Sec. 17. (a) No person's property shall be taken, damaged,
or destroyed for or applied to public use without adequate
compensation being made, unless by the consent of such person, and
only if the taking, damage, or destruction is for:
(1) the ownership, use, and enjoyment of the property,
notwithstanding an incidental use, by:
(A) the State, a political subdivision of the State, or the public at large; or
(B) an entity granted the power of eminent domain
under law; or
(2) the elimination of urban blight on a particular
parcel of property.
(b) In this section, "public use" does not include the
taking of property under Subsection (a) of this section for
transfer to a private entity for the primary purpose of economic
development or enhancement of tax revenues.

Anonymous said...

Apparently Justice has a short attention span, like my kids.

Xnuiem said...

Which is why we need TORT REFORM! The judges are such tools! Any case that infringes on a law, in this case the one we just put into place, should be tossed out and the plantiff fined. But no, it is ok to waste tax payer dollars, everyone's time, and still be a complete douche and stay a judge. I am so over the complaints about the system and no changes.

By the way, I own an oil and gas company. We own leases and operate oil wells across Texas and New Mexico. All our wells are out in the middle of nowhere, they don't even have addresses just GPS coordinates (TXU hates that). And I know from expreince the TCEQ and RRC both are a lot of "take your word for it" on a lot of things. We are as careful as possible, and back when we first got into this line of business, we had a minor spill (about .25 bbl of West Texas Sour), and I called it in. We were cleaning it up following the EPA guidelines, but I thought I should report it. Oddly enough, the TCEQ didn't care, and the RRC said they didn't want to know unless they noticed it on an inspection, and even then probably wouldn't care. The reason given? "We dont have anything to report, o&g is exempt from reporting small spills and leaks*.

Amazing...And now other companies are able to get away with this same stuff, but in our backyards. Urban drilling should be held to a higher standard, but hell, even my operation should be held to a standard of some kind.

Another Concerned Citizen said...

Xnuiem thanks for the info and your honesty. You may contact us directly anytime and educate us from an industry point of view.

Anonymous said...

All fair and good. I am a reasonable person and do understand your point fo view on this matter. I didn't want to step on any toes, but everyone has a right to voice their opinion. I guess the problem is that I am deeply saddened by the Urban Sprawl that has infested and consumed this area. Some call it progress, I guess. As to not caring about peoples health, you are a bold one to say that I do not care. I don't remember stating that in my comments. If I am wrong please show me where I said that...The point is, that I live with a gas well on my property and no one ever became ill. Kids all have five fingers and five toes and the fish in the creek do not have two heads. Honestly, being in the circle of large land owners that have had the priveledge of developing their mineral rights I do not know anybody that has caught a fish with two heads. To the post about drilling on 2499, I never mentioned that either, and you must be confused. Anyway, the big point is that soon the wells will be here, and your lives will go on as normal and this will be forgotten. You will be on to some other great rally and cause.

"The Knight of Justice"

Anonymous said...

Oh, I forgot something. To the post about my attention span, I do not understand your comment. Don't you need to get Timmy to Soccer Practice? Dumb

Anonymous said...

People, I am with you. I have done much research over the past few days, and must agree that you are right. Not every company operates as mine did and you have right to fear. I am deeply saddened that I took such a tone. With your permission I would like to join forces with you and do my part in your cause. Although I do stand by much of what I have said, I have opened my eyes to your side. Allow me to shuck these dark robes and join your cause. Would you have me at your next rally, unmasked, and humbled?

Anonymous said...

"The Knight of Justice"