Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Senate Questions Roberts on Eminent Domain

John G. Roberts Jr. today told senators weighing his nomination to be chief justice that it is "very appropriate" for Congress to consider legislation that would counter a recent Supreme Court ruling that allows cities to seize private property in the interest of private economic development.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/14/AR2005091401195.html

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Federal legislation in the works

Any local or state government that employs the right of eminent domain to transfer property from one private owner to another would be denied funding for all federal programs under legislation written by Rep. Henry Bonilla (R-Texas), The Hill newspaper reports from the Capitol.

Agriculture Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) characterized the legislation as the strongest response yet to the Supreme Court’s June ruling in Kelo v. City of New London, Conn., which affirmed governments’ rights to seize property from landowners for private development deemed by elected officials to be in the community interest. The Agriculture Committee, which will hold a hearing on the Bonilla bill today, has been given primary jurisdiction on the issue

Friday, September 02, 2005

Hurricane Katrina and eminent domain

This is something I don't know the answer to...will many property owners lose their properties that are now very much blighted as New Orleans rebuilds?

Food for thought...

Friday, August 26, 2005

Missouri Expects Eminent Domain Legislation this January

A panel at a town hall meeting on eminent domain at St. James the Greater School in Dogtown, MO, met to discuss eminent domain in Missouri this week.

"We can expect a real influx of legislation coming in January. In Missouri, I can almost guarantee in January there will be bills introduced."

Monday, August 22, 2005

Supremes won't rehear Kelo

The AP is reporting that the Supreme Court won't be rehearing Kelo v. New London anytime soon, despite the close 5-4 decision in light of O'Connor's retirement.

O'Connor wrote in her angry dissent of June that "the specter of condemnation hangs over all property."

Friday, August 19, 2005

Dayton Daily News Editorial

The Dayton Daily News says that local officials have offered few suggestions as to how to protect property owners from over-zealous eminent domain-ers. Here's what they said about Senate Bill 167, my proposed moratorium on eminent domain while we convene a study committee:

The need for the study is clear. And the idea of a delay has merit...If Ohio wants to ban the newly blessed usage of eminent domain, it can. But the state ought to pause first. It ought to give concerned citizens an opportunity to really understand the situation, to get past the emotional pitches. It ought to see if the public's legitimate concerns are ameliorated by what's really happening.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The Economist on Eminent Domain

An article published in a recent issue of the Economist, artfully lays out what's at heart with the Kelo decision.

The question is not whether the development plan is good or bad...What matters is whether the plan represents such a pressing public good that it is reasonable to use the state's vast coercive power to execute it. For most Americans, Interstate-95 passes muster, but yuppie condos don't.

Eminent Domain News out of the Lonestar State

Texas became the third state in two months to pass a law prohibiting local governments from using the power of eminent domain to increase tax revenues. According to a press release from the Texas Realtors Association, lawmakers in at least 31 states have introduced or plan to introduce eminent domain legislation in future sessions.

Federal lawmakers have also moved to restrict the use of eminent domain.Texas Sen. John Cornyn and Wisconsin Rep. James Sensenbrenner Jr., introduced legislation in Congress that would prohibit federal funding for projects involving aggressive seizures of private property for economic purposes.Texas Rep. Henry Bonilla is also pressing for withholding federal assistancefor development from local municipalities that abuse eminent domain.