Landowners voice concern over pipeline from South Dakota to Patoka

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A South Dakota judge is allowing the operator of a proposed oil pipeline to survey the properties of nearly 20 residents who oppose the project.

Judge Mark Salter on Tuesday granted Dakota Access LLC the right to get surveyors on properties that are along the project’s proposed route.

The company wants to build the 1,100-mile Dakota Access Pipeline from North Dakota to Illinois. About 270 miles of the pipeline would be in eastern South Dakota.

Salter’s decision comes after Dakota Access sued the Minnehaha County landowners arguing its surveyors need to check all properties along the proposed route to determine if the land is suitable for the underground pipeline.

The state’s Public Utilities Commission hasn’t granted a construction permit.

Landowners say they oppose the project mostly out of environmental concerns.