Judge Pauses Land Acquisition for Mountain Valley Pipeline

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ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — A federal judge has halted a company’s plan to take possession of various lands in Virginia for a controversial pipeline project until it can demonstrate that the landowners will be adequately compensated.

The judge on Wednesday said Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC is entitled to condemn the land it needs, but that can’t take immediate possession of most of the properties in question until the court is assured that just compensation will be paid.

Mountain Valley had hoped take possession of the properties by Thursday to meet its preferred schedule for the pipeline, which would carry natural gas across West Virginia and Virginia.

Mountain Valley had reached agreements to acquire most of the land for the project, but it sued nearly 300 property owners who refused to give up their lands.

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