Sunday, September 30, 2007
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Concord auto mechanic Frank Abernethy, struggling to run his small business, was caught off guard by the unannounced visit from the railroad agent.
It was early August when the employee from the state-owned N.C. Railroad Co. showed up at his garage and demanded he sign a lease for $1,200 a year in rent and fees. He also said Abernethy needed $1 million in insurance because his shop sits too close to the tracks.
Even though the mechanic bought the property in 2005, the railroad says it technically owns his land -- and has 19th-century deeds as proof.
"Nobody told me that when I bought the building," Abernethy said this week. "I told the guy, `What are you trying to do, put me out of business?' "
The railroad says there are hundreds of other property owners like Abernethy along its 317-mile line from Charlotte to Morehead City. One day, the company could try to reclaim the disputed parcels. But for now, the railroad just wants rent, said Scott Saylor, railroad president.
It's part of the railroad's push to take back and manage its right of way -- the 200-foot-wide buffer along the tracks. more...
Sunday, September 23, 2007
Background on Eminent Domain and Kelo
What Other States Have Done
What North Carolina Has Done
Why North Carolina Needs a Constitutional Amendment
Limit Takings to a Proper “Public Use”
Protect Against the “Blight” Excuse
Provide “Just” Compensation
Create a Fair Process for Eminent Domain Victims
Download PDF file: Eminent Domain in N.C.: The Case for Real Reform (701 k)
When residents of the Shannamara neighborhood got their tax bills last month, a few realized something strange: They'd been billed for police services in both Mecklenburg County and Stallings. Now, there may be nothing they can do about it. more...
Saturday, September 22, 2007
The City of Toledo's proposed use of eminent domain for taking the Southwyck Mall properties for redevelopment will be the subject of a public hearing on Sept. 24. The issue of eminent domain became official with a resolution presented to City Council Sept. 18.
The resolution (603-07), calling for the use of eminent domain for the roadway extension at Southwyck Mall, was discussed and held for the next Council meeting on Oct. 2, due to the hearing, according to City Council Clerk Gerald Dendinger.
Eminent domain for Southwyck is the topic for the Environmental, Utilities and Public Service Committee meeting scheduled for 4 p.m. Sept. 24 in City Council chambers. The public is invited to attend and voice its opinion on the proposed use of eminent domain.
City Council member Rob Ludeman said eminent domain is a tool the City of Toledo can use to get Bill Dillard and Buddy Hering, who own parcels at Southwyck, to complete the deal with Larry Dillin, president of Dillin Corporation. more...
Friday, September 21, 2007
Two state representatives say they’ll be working over the next several months on legislation to protect the property rights of all Delawareans.
State representatives Greg Hastings, R-Millsboro, and Dennis Williams, D-Wilmington, recently announced a cooperative effort that’ll use the resources of the Institute for Justice, the Delaware Bar Association and the state House of Representatives to craft a bill to shield private property owners from unwarranted governmental takings.
The issue has most recently surfaced in Wilmington, where city officials have threatened to use their power of eminent domain to seize as many as 62 properties as part of the next phase of the South Walnut Street Urban Renewal Plan. As many as 38 working businesses could be displaced if their properties are condemned by the city. Under the plan, the land would then be sold to private developers for use in high-end residential and commercial projects.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
The test case may be in Osceola in southern Iowa, where local governments may attempt to seize farmland to make way for a reservoir.
"This lake project is about development and money under the guise of Osceola's water needs," said Cindy Sanford, whose farm may be taken for the project.
Sanford and other property owners spoke at a Statehouse news conference, joined by Reps. Jeff Kaufmann, R-Wilton, Jodi Tymeson, R-Winterset, and former Rep. Ed Fallon, D-Des Moines.
Kaufmann said there will be a two-pronged effort, one to fight for property rights in court and one to strengthen the 2006 law in the next legislative session. He said the law seemed adequate until "some knowledgeable lawyers found some loopholes." more...
A group of Pinewild residents have filed a lawsuit attempting to block the village of Pinehurst's planned annexation of the gated country club community.
Pinewild Project Limited Partnership, the company that owns Pinewild, is among the plaintiffs.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
DES MOINES, Iowa — Lawmakers and landowners called Tuesday for tightening a state law guarding property rights, warning that developers and officials are using a loophole to push for a new lake project that would flood dozens of Clarke County properties.
Two legislators said they would try to add new restrictions to a property rights law approved by the Legislature last year over the veto of then-Gov. Tom Vilsack.
"It really is important for lawmakers to stand up for landowners because Iowans just fundamentally believe it's wrong for government to take people's land and their homes and their farms for economic development," Rep. Jodi Tymeson, R-Winterset, said at a Statehouse news conference. more...
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Leah Justice and Chris Dailey
September 14, 2007
The recently filed lawsuit against Tryon’s annexation automatically puts the town’s expansion on hold, and it could take a few years to resolve the case in court, according to David Lawrence of the N.C. Institute of Government.
Lawrence, considered a leading authority on annexation in the state, responded to questions from the Bulletin this week. He said the lawsuit, filed by 136 petitioners representing 88 properties (see list of names on page 15) in Polk County Superior Court in August, creates an automatic stay of the annexation.
When a developer devised a plan in early 2006 to turn Little Ferry's drab industrial area into a 12-acre, tax-generating waterfront, the concept appeared enticing.
A hotel along with restaurants, retail shops, condos, office space and parkland would replace an abandoned pipe company and several underused commercial sites along the Hackensack River.
But the plan created an uproar among residents because it called for designating the area blighted and condemning several homes and small businesses through eminent domain.
The project was shelved within a month.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Homeowner: Cary Wants My Land for Performing Arts Center
Marilyn and Marvin Goldman have spent the past 11 years living in a downtown Cary condo, but their home might be in jeopardy.The town of Cary wants to build a performing arts center and a parking deck at the northeast Corner of Dry Avenue and Academy Street. The problem is, the Goldman's home and 18 other properties are in the way.
“They’re going to bulldoze this,” Marilyn said. "It’s not my house they want. It’s my land they want.”
Blogger: N.C. Property Rights Watch - Create Post