AUSTIN, Texas - Texas farmers say their big focus this legislative session is on securing protections when private companies try to take their land.
- Texas farmers focused on protections in eminent domain cases
- Texas lawmakers pursuing eminent domain reforms
- Fair compensation among the concerns
They're getting support from two state lawmakers, Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham and Rep. DeWayne Burns, R-Cleburne, who have filed legislation to reform the current process of eminent domain.
The bills focus on three areas of reform: mandating a public meeting so property owners understand the process and can have their questions answered, specifying minimum protections and holding condemners accountable if they offer property owners less compensation than they are owed.
“The taking of private property by these private companies, who do have eminent domain power, has at times been not fair and somewhat abusive, so to speak,” said Russell Boening, Texas Farm Bureau president.
Boening said he knows there will have to be a balance in a rapidly growing state that needs new pipelines and infrastructure.
“But the balance shouldn’t be burdened on the property owners. There needs to be fair compensation,” he said.
Click the video link above to watch our full interview with Boening.