Judge Denies Iowa Landowners’ Request to Halt Pipeline Work

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A judge has denied a request by Iowa landowners to immediately halt construction of an oil pipeline on 15 parcels of their land.

District Court Judge Jeffrey Farrell says in his order posted Monday that a 1989 Iowa law requires landowners to first go to the Iowa Utilities Board to stop a utilities project.

The landowners have sued, saying the board doesn’t have legal authority to give for-profit Texas oil company Dakota Access the right to forcefully condemn private farmland under an eminent domain law for the pipeline.

The landowners’ attorney, Bill Hannigan, says the request will be filed with the board and refiled with the court if it’s rejected. He says it will be appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court if necessary.

The 1,168-mile pipe crosses 18 Iowa counties.