The subject of the proposed Jordan Cove Project was initially a non-issue with me.

If it was built and was beneficial, so be it. If it seemed dangerous, destructive to the beauty of this area or I felt uncomfortable living near it, I could simply move. I don't own anything here, my income is not generated from here, and I can be just as happy somewhere up or down the coast or inland.

But the whole thing was brought home to me by the situation of friend and family members, Jim and his wife, who reside on Old Wagon Road in Coos Bay, which is the land that Veresen and the Jordan Cove Project are lusting over to use as a "staging area" for their LNG pipeline.

I have enjoyed many holiday gatherings at their lovely home and well kept property. I've watched Jim feed apples to the deer who come almost to his front door, watched our mutual grandchildren enjoy Easter egg hunts, and have been inspired by his wife's awesome garden.

The thought of deliberate destruction to this beautiful property that includes centuries old trees, seems contradictory to the usual "pro environment" thinking of people in this area. Jim explained that if he did not voluntarily allow use of this land it may be taken by eminent domain. Really?

Everything I've ever read about eminent domain and it's placement in our law appeared that it be used only when absolutely necessary, and as a last resort, for the common good for vital community needs. While there have been some legitimate cases where eminent domain was the necessary course of action, all too often in recent times it has been abused by greedy people for financial gain. Of such are cases where homes or farms were taken in order to build large neighborhoods, malls, etc., in order to generate more tax monies and therefore "benefit" the community. I have never read where it is supposed to be used where a foreign country is the main beneficiary, even if our local economy enjoys a secondary benefit.

Home and land ownership rights are something that should be protected. It is my hope that Veresen and the Jordan Cove people rethink their plan and find another area to use.

Bonnie Smith

Coos Bay


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