TransCanada sued by former land agent for pipeline feedback

The company that wants to build the Energy East pipeline is facing a lawsuit by a former employee whose job was to get feedback from New Brunswickers.

Company 'perturbed' by negative comments from New Brunswickers, says dismissed employee Craig Barry

The company that wants to build the Energy East pipeline is facing a lawsuit by a former subcontracted employee whose job was to get feedback from New Brunswickers.

Craig Barry was one of 12 land agents who approached residents along a proposed route for the TransCanada Corp. Energy East pipeline.          

Barry, who came home to New Brunswick from Calgary for the job, was hired by TransCanada subcontractor, Jammin Dowd Land Services.

He worked in the Plaster Rock and Chipman areas asking homeowners if they'd accept $1,000 to let TransCanada survey their land.

Some of the people he met were concerned about the pipeline's possible impact on their property, said Barry.

But when he reported that back to TransCanada, the company was, in his words, "perturbed."

Feedback welcome

"They basically said that I was in bed with the citizens of New Brunswick, and all I was doing was simply relaying the findings," said Barry.

"I'm just simply the messenger, I'm the middle man between the citizens and the company, TransCanada Pipleline. Initially I was very much behind this project, but now I'm left like every other Maritimer, wondering whether or not I'm turning around and heading back to Calgary to work."

TransCanada interceded with Jammin Dowd Land Services, to fire him, said Barry.

Barry is now suing both companies.

CBC News couldn't reach Jammin Dowd for comment.

TransCanada will defend itself in court, said spokesman Philippe Cannon.

"Those are allegations that he is putting forward. We will make a case in the appropriate place. But he's a contractor of a subcontractor for us, with no direct link to TransCanada."

TransCanada welcomes the feedback that landowners give to land agents, said Cannon.

Meanwhile, Barry said he's probably heading back to Alberta for work.

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