Posts Tagged ‘Julia Trigg Crawford’

Media Advisory: Appellate Court hears Crawford v. TransCanada Eminent Domain Case on Keystone XL pipeline

MEDIA ADVISORY              
Press Conference Via Conference Call:  July 30, 2013, 3 :30 pm

Contacts: Julia Trigg Crawford, 713.443.8789, Rita Beving, Public Citizen, 214.557.2271, Linda Curtis, Independent Texans, 512.535.0989

Appellate Court to hear Julia Trigg Crawford v. TransCanada Eminent Domain Case Regarding Keystone XL Pipeline

WHAT:  A tele presser following the hearing with the 6th Appellate Court on Julia Trigg Crawford’s challenge to TransCanada’s right to use eminent domain to condemn her family’s farmland for the Keystone XL pipeline.

WHEN:  Tuesday, July 30, 3:30 pm, following the hearing.  Hearing begins at 1:30 pm.

WHERE:  Via conference call at this number: 866.501.6174 and conference code 31790031892 or in person outside the courtroom a Hunt County Auxiliary Courtroom, 2700 Johnson Street, Greenville, Texas.

MORE:  Julia Trigg Crawford said, “My family and I are humbled by the support and encouragement we’ve received from across America and the world on our appeal.  What began simply as the Crawford’s stand to protect our farm has become a stand for everyone’s property rights; and furthermore a movement to bring justice to all those who are facing corrupted land grabs.

As we did at the lower court, we will argue that TransCanada is not a common carrier with eminent domain authority, and did not have the right to take our land from us.  TransCanada arrogantly decided not to wait on the decision of the Appeal’s Court, and has pushed forward with its construction.

Our arguments will be heard by an experienced panel of Justices, familiar with cases of this high visibility and significance.  We are confident our case will be given the thoughtful consideration and the review it deserves.”




Lamar County Judge Harris Rules by IPhone — TransCanada Can Take Our Land!

Lamar County Judge Bill Harris really took the cake yesterday evening.  His 15 word ruling, sent via his iPhone (and likely blind copied to a member of the media), granted TransCanada summary judgement.  Yes, according to Harris, TransCanada can come on in and take Julia Trigg Crawford and fame’s land.

For your information, we kept our mouths shut on how we were treated in his courtroom two weeks ago.  We didn’t want to hurt Julia’s case.  But now we can tell you he treated us like naughty children, made no provisions for seating — many of us had to sit on the floor.  He threatened us numerous times for merely moving in and out of the courtroom.  And, more importantly, he carefully ridiculed Julia Trigg Crawford for being an “activist.”

We hope this case isn’t the end of this fight.  But that is up to a lot of people, including many Texans, who have had enough of the lack of balance between property owners and the pipeline industry — and the yahoos who are running this state.  I’m talking about the Governor and the Railroad Commission, who have yet to mention anything about the fact that this pipeline will cross the great Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer that serves 12 million people.

Our resources — land and water — are precious.  We need to make the politician’s pay the price for what they are doing to Texas and Texans.

Therefore, we ask that you call your State representative RIGHT NOW and let them know that you have a problem with the State of Texas leaving land owners and aquifers unprotected.  Tell them you won’t stand for them staying quiet on this issue and that you’re not going away.  Find out who represents you here:

Linda Curtis
Independent Texans

PS  Those of you who live in central Texas, be aware that Rep. Tim Kleinschmidt may be your State Representative.  He is Vice-Chair of the Land and Resource Management Committee that has held one hearing so far on eminent domain abuse.  He wasn’t friendly to landowners, so call him!

Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contacts:  Debra Medina, We Texans, 512.663.8401, Terri Hall, TURF, 210.275.0640, Linda Curtis, Independent Texans, 512.657.2089, Jessica Ellison, Texans for Accountable Government, 512.653.9179,

Ruling on Keystone XL pipeline
Texas Landowner Julia Trigg Crawford  and other landowners  lose major battle to protect themselves from takings of Private Property by Foreign companies
Reaction from former Gubernatorial Candidate Debra Medina and Statewide Groups As Canadian Company Prepares To Begin Pipeline Construction
(Paris, Texas ) A judge today ruled in favor of the controversial Keytone  XL pipeline, allowing them to act as common carrier and giving them to right to condemn land for use as a pipeline.

“Since the Texas Railroad Commission determined way back in 2008 that it had no jurisdiction over TransCanada’s interstate pipeline, it simply defies logic that TransCanada is allowed to take private citizens’ land under a Texas law that requires a pipeline operator to subject itself to the Commission’s juridsiction,” said Wendi Hammond, attorney for landowner.  “The Texas Supreme Court has repeatedly held that if there is an incident of doubt regarding the power of eminient domain authority, then a court must rule in favor of the landowner. Unfortunately, this judge failed to do so.”  Wendi Hammond, the attorney for the landowner

“Judge’s Harris disappointing decision today further highlights the vulnerable and precarious position that Texas landowners are in” said Debra Medina, former Republican candidate for Governor  “ These cases are often argued in county courts poorly equipped to assess such weighty legal questions.  These courts lack the resources to properly consider the complex and voluminous evidence assembled by multibillion dollar corporations.”

“These are pipelines carrying poisons, not for oil independence in our country, but for export, from a foreign land, through our pipelines, to a port that’s going to ship them to foreign lands. These aren’t common carriers for the common good of Texans  — this is a  pipeline designed to speed  oil through Texas,. There are no on or off ramps to this pipeline in Texas and as a result it should not have been permitted to use eminent domain to condemn Texans lands .” Said Tom “Smitty”  Smith of Public Citizen

“The Texas Supreme Court was clear in Denbury that private companies have to prove their project qualifies as a true ‘public use’ before it can exercise eminent domain. We’re disappointed in the Judge’s decision, but we’re confident that the Crawford’s will eventually prevail. This decision puts the onus on the Texas legislature to remedy the outrageous eminent domain abuse taking place in our state, ” said Terri Hall, Director of Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom. “The time for talk is over. Texans are losing their land because of poor oversight and the legislature’s refusal to address the heart of the problem. Texans aren’t going to accept the crumbs we’ve been handed, cloaked as eminent domain reform. It’s time to get serious before irreparable harm is needlessly inflicted upon Texans.”

Recently, the Texas House Land and Resource Management Committee met at the Capitol to hear invited testimony from Crawford and other interested parties regarding the dilemma of industries self-proclaiming they are common carriers with no review from any state agency as to whether a company is truly a common carrier or not. The House Energy Management Committee has also held hearing on pipeline safety issues.

Linda Curtis, director of Indy Texans. Noted, “Ms. Crawford’s case is emblematic of the continuing struggle of Texas landowners being tread upon by a private company taking land for private use, and foreign profit.  TransCanada has yet to provide any evidence that they have the legal authority to seize property in Texas”

” TransCanada used the Commission’s T-4 permit  as an authorization to take Texans land for a private for-profit, foreign pipeline project.  There was no vetting or review by the Commission of a pipeline company’s self-designation as a common carrier. The commission  says  that it has no control over eminent domain.  The legislature needs to fix this mess and assure that landowners rights and the environment are protected.  ” said Chris Wynnyk Wilson  of the Stop Tar Sands Oil Pipelines ( STOP)


Hearing in Austin, Monday, July 23 — No Eminent Domain for Private Gain!

We now have a page up for the hearing next Monday, July 23rd, in Austin.  Please COME to Austin for this hearing!

We will be available starting at 9 a.m. in the Capitol Grill (Room E1.002),  The hearing starts at 10 a.m. in Room E2.012.  Go here for details on parking, etc.
Now, whether or not you can make it next Monday, please call your state representative today about the following.  It appears that the speakers for this hearing on Monday are “by invitation only”.  This is not really the public hearings we have been asking for.  What we really want is for landowners — those most affected by the eminent domain abuses by pipelines (the most immediate being the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline in East Texas) — to have public hearings in their communities.  Please call your state representative today and ask him or her to push for full public hearings in the areas affected right now by the land seizures related to the TransCanada pipeline in east Texas.  You can let him or her know that there is a hearing on Monday at 10 a.m. of Rep. Rene Oliveira’s Land and Resource Management Committee about eminent domain abuses related to this issue.  He or she might also want to send a staffer to this hearing.
You can contribute to Julia Trigg Crawford’s legal case against TransCanada at her website here and for those of you who can make it to Paris, Texas for her hearing on August 10th, please do — mark your calendars and we’ll send you more details soon.

We look forward to seeing as many of you as can make it to Austin next Monday!  

Terri HallTexas TURF
Linda CurtisIndependent Texans
P.S.  Here’s the recent article in the Houston Chronicle about our efforts to protect Texans’ property rights.

Julia Trigg Crawford v. TransCanada/Keystone XL Pipeline Update!

First, take a look at this NY Times article about our friend, Julia Trigg Crawford, who continues to stand up for her private property rights against TransCanada and the Keystone XL Pipeline.  She’s receiving support from folks across the country as her trial date has been delayed.  If you haven’t signed the letter to Texas officials calling for hearings, or contributed to Julia, please do so now, click here.


Julia Trigg Crawford v. TransCanada/Keystone Pipeline

TransCanada/Keystone XL in Texas — impacting all of East Texas:  Julia Trigg Crawford’s case on eminent domain abuse may be the only thing standing in the way of a project that has yet to be fully vetted in Texas.  Will it pose a serious risk to the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer? Our Governor will, of course, never ask this question.  The Crawfords need dollars to pay for their legal costs as this is likely to go all the way to the Texas Supreme Court.  Meanwhile, Debra Medina is working with legislators to call for hearings.  Trial date is April 20th!  Go here for more and to give some of your hard earned dough.


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