Decades-old gas fight unfolding in federal court

KSN News (file)

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A decades-old legal fight over gas seeping from underground storage facility is playing out in condemnation proceedings for more than 9,100 acres of land in south-central Kansas.

A three-person commission appointed by U.S. District Judge Monti Belot will begin hearing testimony Tuesday at the federal courthouse in Wichita in a fight stemming from migrating gas from the Cunningham Storage Field in Kansas.

The commission is tasked with determining what compensation Omaha-based Northern Natural Gas must pay for the condemned property. The hearings are expected to take between six and eight weeks.

Northern Natural Gas says the issue is how much it must pay for 68 tracts, some which have multiple interest owners.

The company is using eminent domain to take the property in Pratt, Kingman and Reno counties.

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