legal with leah

Ohio Farm Bureau staff continues to stay involved in legal issues that affect Farm Bureau members, especially as it involves property rights and the use of eminent domain throughout the state. Many of the cases OFBF has recently been involved with have resulted in settlement or dismissal before making it to the Ohio Supreme Court, a good result for the individuals litigating while still establishing key legal foundations for the future. Below is a round-up of recent decisions:

Case: Kinder Morgan v. PDB Farms, et al., Wood County

At Issue: Eminent domain concerning Kinder Morgan’s Utopia pipeline project.
FB Action: Filed an amicus brief supporting landowners in both trial and appellate courts.
Status: After landowners secured a trial court victory, the pipeline company dismissed its appeal.
Outcome: The Wood County trial court’s ruling that the pipeline was not for a public use and could not use the power of eminent domain was left in place. Precedent was set in Wood County.

Case: BC South LLC v. Hon. Judge Knece, Pickaway County

At Issue: Columbia Gas Co. had sought to acquire property from a Farm Bureau member‑family for a pipeline that will feed a tissue paper manufacturer locating in Pickaway County.
FB Action: Wrote a brief supporting the landowners who have argued that this is not a public use, a requirement for eminent domain in the appellate court, and a brief supporting a Writ of Prohibition, filed when the lower court judge attempted to move forward with the compensation, despite a pending appeal.
Status: The Ohio Supreme Court granted an immediate stay of proceedings while the writ is pending at the court.
Outcome: The stay granted by the Ohio Supreme Court was an important action to ensuring the landowner’s rights were respected in this process. The parties have since settled this litigation, resulting in a favorable outcome for the landowner.

Case: Schultheiss v. Heinrich Enterprises, Washington County

At Issue: An appellate court had ruled an oil and gas lease had expired due to lack of production and the acceptance of domestic gas did not extend the lease.
FB Action: Supported case with an amicus brief at the Ohio Supreme Court.
Status: Supreme Court ruled it shouldn’t have heard the case in the first place.
Outcome: The 4th District Court of Appeals decision, which found the lease did expire and the domestic gas production did not affect the lease’s status, stays in place. This important decision will be binding in an appellate district that has a significant amount of oil and gas litigation.

Case: Koprivec v. Rails to Trails, Wayne County

At Issue: Landowner claims to have gained legal ownership of an abandoned railroad corridor through his land under the legal theory of adverse possession.
FB Action: Filed an amicus brief in the successful appeal of this case at the lower level, where the court had ruled, in part, in favor of the landowner. Filed the same at the Ohio Supreme Court.
Status: Ohio Supreme Court has held oral arguments.
Outcome: Pending

Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Farm Labor Resources
I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

Strong communities
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

Groovy Plants Ranch
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
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Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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