After telling Nebraska Watchdog there’s little if anything he can do about the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline, Governor Dave Heineman (R) has nothing to say about a recently released federal memo that says otherwise.
The memo, unveiled last week by XL opponents, puts states ahead of Uncle Sam when it comes to locating pipelines. According to the 6 page report from the Congressional Research Service (CRS), “The federal government does not have siting authority for oil pipelines, even interstate pipelines…state law establishes the primary siting authority for oil pipelines, including interstate oil pipelines.”
During an exclusive on camera interview with Nebraska Watchdog last month, the Governor-while criticizing XL opponent Jane Kleeb-said “It’s very difficult for the Governor to issue an executive order that says stop (the pipeline)…that’s one where Jane needs to do her homework.”
Following the release of the memo Nebraska Watchdog asked Heineman’s office if the Governor was aware of this memo and if the Governor disputes its conclusions? Nebraska Watchdog was told “there won’t be a reply” to the memo which was sent to Omaha area Congressman Lee Terry (R) last October, after Terry requested information on the pipeline. Terry’s office says the memo was “shared with Nebraska elected officials.”
According to the Lincoln Journal Star those officials included State Senators Chris Langemeier, Annette Dubas, and Kate Sullivan none of whom give the memo “the weight critics seemed to assign to it.”