Rebecca Lynn Eminger figures it's a David vs. Goliath type fight, but she's not going to give up a parcel of her land without a fight.
In a court filing, Southwestern Public Service Company contends they need less than 6 acres of Eminger's land off New Mexico 88 for construction of a transmission line.
SPS cites eminent domain as its right to the property.
Eminger, 65, says the acreage is part of 42 acres of what was once used to graze cattle but is now in the Conservation Reserve Program that she wants to sell. She said the property just east of Portales has been in her family for five generations. She contends having transmission lines could jeopardize selling the land.
Eminger said she has refused the compensation SPS has offered for the land.
A hearing will be held today in district court on the matter.
"The only hope I have is that the judge will have compassion for us," Eminger said. "It's very frustrating because I can't believe that we've been going through this for a year and nobody knew about it."
According to SPS' application filed in the 9th Judicial District Court, SPS is in the process of surveying land in Roosevelt County for the construction of an electric transmission line and the line is a necessary part of the company's operations as a public utility company.
Xcel Spokesman Wes Reeves declined to comment on the hearing because he says he doesn't comment on legal proceedings.
According to the application, the project consists of the construction of above-ground transmission lines set on above-ground structures and the lines must necessarily cross privately owned real property, including 5.65 acres of Eminger's land.
Since Eminger refuses to consent to their entry, SPS' only other option is to seek an order for entry from District Court, according to applications.
Eminger said meetings were held for landowners that were to be affected by the building of the transmission lines, and at those meetings she said she was told she would not be able to build any additional structures on her land.
Being in the farming industry all her life, she was hoping that land would go to a farmer or rancher.
"No one's going to run cows on it because they're not going to be able to build anything," Eminger said.
She feels her chances are slim in keeping her property as is but she hopes the judge has a similar mindset of the people of Roosevelt County and will make a decision in her favor.
"Anybody that's been here a length of time and knows the people here knows we care about few things; God, our land and our country."