County declines to review pipeline project appeals

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- Douglas County commissioners decided on Wednesday that they will not review the appeals to the Pacific Connector Pipeline project.

Back on March 20, the Douglas County Planning Commission allowed an amendment that removed the condition that the pipeline only be used for imports of natural gas.

Now, if the project receives approval natural gas will be allowed to be exported through the line.

Two appeals have been filed by separate parties, and by the county declining to review them, they will now need to be seen by the state Land Use Board of Appeals.

Officials say that LUBA could send the appeals back to the county.

Bill Gow says his ranch will be affected by LNG pipeline. "The people in this county should be outraged at what's going on right now in this county," he said.

Gow says the Williams Pacific Pipeline Company offered him $14,000 to have the pipeline cut through two miles of his property. "I can't grow timber on it, I can't build, it devalues the heck out of my property," said Gow. "The resale value of my property goes to heck because no one wants to live by a pipeline."

With a decision on the project resting in the hands of LUBA, Gow is joined by others who worry that eminent domain may be looming over their property.

Commissioner Doug Robertson says he's not a fan of using the power of eminent domain, but he can't guarantee it won't be used.

Robertson says hearings will be held once an environmental impact statement is provided by the pipeline company.

This story will be updated.