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TID moves ahead with eminent domain

POSTED August 23, 2011 9:24 p.m.

The Turlock Irrigation District Board of Directors took the next step in the Hughson/Grayson 115 kilovolt transmission line project on Tuesday by voting to approve the resolution of necessity, which will allow TID to file eminent domain proceedings.

Residents along the proposed route of the transmission line previously requested a 30 day extension on the decision to start eminent domain proceedings. Residents who live on the Euclid Road and Faith Home Road areas of the proposed transmission line said that they were not satisfied with TID’s appraisal of the value of their land. Many residents sought a second opinion, and those second appraisals are not yet complete. Residents did not accept TID’s offers for their property.

“This is forever, and we want to make sure we don’t make a mistake,” said Euclid resident Josie Cipponeri.

The next step in the eminent domain proceedings, if TID and residents cannot come to an agreement, is for TID to file a lawsuit for an order of possession. This order would give TID permission to access and use land on private property for the construction of transmission lines. The eminent domain process can take up to five months to complete. As TID officials hope to begin work on the line segment in December, time is of the essence to begin the lengthy process.

“Once you get to this step in the process, the issue is one of timing,” TID eminent domain attorney Joe Fagundes said.

 TID is still in negotiations over power pole placement on owners’ land. Marina Cummerow, TID real property negotiator, said that representatives would be driving the proposed line next week to double check that residents and TID have the same expectations of proposed pole placement.

“We’ll be continuing to work with residents to negotiate and obtain easements,” Cummerow said.

To contact Andrea Goodwin, e-mail agoodwin@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2003.

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