EXCLUSIVE: Kelcy Warren talks with us after meeting with farmers in St. Anthony affected by DAPL

FULL TRANSCRIPT:

Please note - this transcript was copied from an electronic captioning service. We apologize for any errors, spelling, grammatical, or otherwise.)

Chris Berg:
Tonight, my exclusive interview with Kelly Warren, we covered a ton of topics from who is going to ultimately pay for the cost of these protests to how do we make our farmers and ranchers in St. Anthony whole again, and what does the pipeline mean to the people of North Dakota? Welcome to point of view. I'm Chris Berg. Thank you for joining us on this Monday night. I spoke with Mr. Warren after he heard from farmers and ranchers from St. Anthony area last week. I said what was your greatest take-away from today's town hall meeting?

VIDEO:
Kelcy Warren:
Well, for me, it was extremely good. You know, being in Dallas, Texas, and running a pipeline company, this project to me is a whole lot about balance sheets and financials and diagrams, and this humanized this for me. These are people who have been affected, and we have, too, but in a different way. It was effective.

CB:
A family teared up. Can you tell us what went down?

KW:
Really nice people, and they handed me on a policeman pamphlet they're doing for a school, and I agreed to help, personally agreed to help. That's what they was.

CB:
Speaking about helping, you heard from one farmer who said you know what, Kelcy, we're trying to get our soil reclaimed, and if it doesn't, I may not be in business next year. You’re take-away, and is there anything farmers and ranchers can do to regain that money?

KW:
On regaining the money, let's talk about reclamation. We have a job to do, that's part of our contract. That's part of the job we have to do. We have to reclaim that soil. What I’m hearing is in some instances we may be slow to start that work. These people have to get back into agricultural production, grassland production, whatever it might be, so I need to go back to Dallas and try to maybe move some of our equipment up here faster than what we're doing here today. That was helpful. And to hear how important it is for their lives I think is very helpful.

CB:
One thing that came up was civil lawsuits, and one gentleman said a lot of us cannot afford these expensive attorneys, so it should be Wayne Stenjem. Is there anything that energy transfer partners can do to help these farmers and ranchers?

KW:
I think so. I think energy transfer, we're investing in our future right now. We want to understand what just happened. We're not exactly sure what it was, but we think we know. We think this was about one money-raise. I'm not belittling other matters, but we think it's about money raising, and we're trying to figure out who benefited from that, and there are claims that should be received by people, and we're investigating that and hoping others will share information with us as they can.

CB:
Could you be more specific? You did call out today and say, hey, we're going to find out who was profiting from this, and someone is going to pay a price, I don't want to put words in your mouth, but we're going to make some people pay. What do you hope to accomplish?

KW:
In our case, it's to send a message thaw can't do this going forward. There are consequences. You can't just move to the next job in another state and be a paid protester and wreak havoc. We are going to hold people accountable for their actions. The way to do that is not go after the little -- someone that truly was emotionally bothered by something we were doing but rather to go after who profited, and great profits were made from this cause, and we're going to find out who did that, and that's who we want to send the message to: be careful who you interfere with going forward.

CB:
Think that might be it this morning?

KW:
I can't comment on that.

CB:
One of the things that jumped out to me today, you said, hey, we want to cut the state of North Dakota a check, we'll meet with the governor later, and we have to work out the semantics. Are you prepared to pay the full $40 million?

KW:
No, we're not, that's pretty easy for me to answer that, but I will tell you the federal government has a duty here, and they need to step up, and then we need to discuss with your government then what is the appropriate amount for us to pay and when. We expect to pay a meaningful amount of money to reimburse the state for the resources.

CB:
Just legal issues you're trying to work out?

KW:
No, I just believe that -- think about what the feds did. Come camp out on our property, we'll let you stay there free, and then wreak havoc on this state and this company. We'll see what that turns out to be, and then you've got your government in this state is amazing, they're amazing, and see what happened.

CB:
With everything you've been through and now there is oil flowing through this pipeline right now as we speak. What does that feel like?

KW:
It's incredible. Just a few months ago, I would wake up in the morning wondering how I was going to keep my people safe and not have loss of life, seriously. It was that dire. And today we've got I saw some statistics in your state five dollars per barrel. That's easy to do. That's huge, and it's stimulated the economy for North Dakota.

CB:
You talked about the dollars and cents. We're told it could be a hundred million dollars a revenue from our state just from you guys. Talk about the farming thing, and also these rural communities, sparsely populated, and you're going to be doing $10 million a year in property taxes for these rural communities. Tubing about that impact.

KW:
It's got to have a big impact. I mean, we're an industry, the pipeline industry is an industry, and it's alive and well and thriving, and now we're alive and well and thriving in your state, and there's rewards that come with that, and we're going to do our job safely, we're going to do it correctly, and people are going to benefit all along the route of our pipeline, and we're very, very proud of that. There's a good conclusion here for all of us.

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