The Latest: Iowa landowners denied pipeline work delay

AP News
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Posted: Aug 25, 2016 6:09 PM

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Latest on the status of the construction oil pipeline owned by a Texas-based company (all times local):

5:10 p.m.

The Iowa Utilities Board has denied landowners' request to halt construction of an oil pipeline beyond this week.

The three-member board voted Thursday afternoon against a lengthy stay of construction of the Dakota Access pipeline on parcels of 14 landowners while a court considers a lawsuit they've filed. That lawsuit challenges the board's authority to allow eminent domain for a privately owned pipeline project.

Chairwoman Geri Huser says the board concluded landowners have little likelihood of success in their court case and that Dakota Access would be financially harmed by construction delays.

The landowners plan to appeal the board's action to district court.

The board's order preventing the Texas-based pipeline owners from doing work on the 14 parcels until Monday remains in place.

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2:30 p.m.

Construction on a four-state oil pipeline at a site in southern North Dakota near a Native American reservation has not yet resumed.

About 300 people are at a campsite where protesters from across the country and members of 60 tribes have gathered in opposition to the $3.8 billion pipeline that will pass through Iowa, Illinois, North Dakota and South Dakota. Six observers from Amnesty International are also present.

The pipeline's Texas-based owners agreed last week to halt construction near the reservation until a hearing Wednesday in federal court. The judge said he'd rule by Sept. 9 on a request by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe to stop construction near their reservation, which straddles the North Dakota-South Dakota border.

As of midday Thursday, construction had not resumed.

Dallas-based operator Energy Transfer Partners didn't immediately respond to requests for comment from The Associated Press regarding when construction could restart.

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1:30 p.m.

The Iowa Utilities Board has declined to take immediate action on a request by 14 landowners to halt construction of a four-state oil pipeline.

There is temporary stop on construction until Monday but the board met Thursday to hear two hours of arguments from Texas-based Dakota Access and the landowners on whether to order a more permanent delay.

The landowners have filed a lawsuit that challenges the board's authority to allow eminent domain of their land for a privately owned pipeline project. That suit has not come before a court yet.

The $3.8 billion pipeline has generated legal challenges and protests in North Dakota and Iowa.

The board adjourned until 4:30 p.m. Thursday, and will meet again Friday afternoon. It gave no indication when it would vote.