Iowa recently hosted a guest from Oregon, Paul Cienfuegos, who advocated for a community rights movement, urging local municipalities to ignore state law and set their own policy towards energy infrastructure projects such as the Dakota Access Pipeline. The visit generated criticism from many Iowans, including Ames resident Randy Page, who wrote the following in a letter to the Ames Tribune:
First, Mr. Cienfuegos’ grasp of the Iowa Constitution seems to be a bit tenuous at best. The community ordinances he proposed to block the Dakota Access Pipeline are not only unconstitutional, but will also block proposals that Mr. Cienfuegos and his hosts might actually support. The sword, as they say, cuts both ways on this issue.
Second, the litigation costs of these irresponsible actions proposed by the panel would be borne by Iowa’s taxpayers. Payments to support litigation over illegal measures are not how I want my tax dollars spent.
Mr. Page also noted that the Iowa Utilities Board was designated by a democratically elected legislature to decide on matters such as the Dakota Access Pipeline, and urged that all sides respect the rule of law on this issue.
The Iowa Utilities Board is projected to issue a ruling on the Dakota Access Pipeline at their public deliberation session tomorrow.
Click here to read Mr. Page’s full remarks.