Posts from 2009

A year or so ago, I attended a three-day symposium on regulatory takings that was held at Stanford University. At the end of the symposium, the final panel of speakers was asked to predict what the United States Supreme Court might be doing in the area of takings over the next couple of years. The answer of at least one panelist was essentially nothing. In his view (at least as I understood it), the Supreme Court had been grappling with various takings issues for years without coming up with particularly workable formulas and was done trying.

Well, based on an article in the Los Angeles Times ...

The City of Claremont voted 4-1 to extend its redevelopment agency's eminent domain authority for another 12 years.  In a November 29 Inland Valley Daily Bulletin article, Claremont renews its eminent domain power, reporter Wes Woods, II writes that the the City's redevelopment agency amended its redevelopment plan to prevent its eminent domain authority from lapsing in December. 

The use of eminent domain is often controversial, but especially so when it is for redevelopment purposes.  And, when redevelopment requires condemnation of residential property, the public tends to ...

Posted in Right to Take

So it's the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, and I thought I should spend some time thinking about what I'm thankful for (apart from Cal's victory at Stanford last Saturday).  Here's a list of three things an eminent domain attorney can be thankful for:

1.   I Live in a Country With Eminent Domain.  I know, who spends time being thankful for eminent domain?  But think about it.  In many places, the government just takes property, paying nothing.  Even in this country, before it was this country, when the Pilgrims took land from existing Native American tribes just after inviting them over for a ...

It seems most commentators on eminent domain generally, and on the use of eminent domain for redevelopment purposes in particular, adopt an extreme stance.  The loudest voices, especially in the "post-Kelo" world, tend to be property-rights advocates who denounce virtually any use of eminent domain, especially for redevelopment purposes. 

A good example of this appears in a recent San Diego News Network article by Brian Peterson, president of the Grantville Action Group:  "What we Learned at a Redevelopment Conference:  Don't do E-mail."  The article summarizes two ...

The Cato Institute's blog has an interesting post concerning the government's ability to induce local government agencies to enact tougher zoning standards that decrease the value of property which the government may want to acquire in the future. 

The post, titled "A Special Kind of Eminent Domain Abuse," deals specifically with the federal government's actions with respect to property it has contemplated acquiring for 30 years in order to expand the Everglades National Park.  The post  by Ilya Shapiro reports that in the case of 480.00 acres of Land v. United ...

Posted in Projects

The City of Visalia's road widening project at the Mooney Boulevard and Walnut Avenue intersection depends on the acquisition of a strip of private property necessary to relocate power poles.  According to the Visalia Times-Delta article, "Power poles, land acquisition trip up Visalia's plans for transforming Mooney/Walnut intersection," the necessary strip of land belongs to the owners of the Peachtree Shopping Center.  Those owners do not want the power poles on their property, and Visalia's City Council has therefore approved the use of eminent domain.

According to the owners ...

Posted in Events

Yesterday, I spoke at the Appraisal Institute's 42nd Annual Litigation Seminar.  As usual, it was a great event, well attended by many of the top eminent domain appraisers in Southern California.  I spoke about recent developments in a presentation entitled "Eminent Domain: Where Are We, and Where Have We Been?"  [PDF] 

While I am confident that anyone in attendance would tell you I was brilliant, I want to focus today on some issues that arose in Ted Whitmer's presentation entitled Legal Instructions, Litigation & Appraisal Institute Standards.  Ted's firm, Appraiser Defense

Posted in Projects

With recreational travelers bound for Las Vegas and Laughlin combining with commuter traffic and freight movement, the junction of Interstate 15 and Interstate 215, known as the Devore interchange, likely qualifies as the the worst bottleneck on the I-15 in San Bernardino County.

And as Dug Begley reports today in a Press-Enterprise article titled Devore Interchange Discussed Today, the San Bernardino Association of Governments in planning to do something about it:

The interchange, a well-known bottleneck near where traffic enters and exits the Cajon Pass to the High Desert, is ...

Posted in Projects

Last night, the Riverside City Council approved the use of eminent domain to acquire the land necessary for the Five Points intersection project.  The project includes widening La Sierra and Hole avenues and Pierce Street, adding left turn lanes, and closing Bushnell Avenue off as a cul-de-sac at La Sierra.

According to the Press Enterprise article, "Riverside to spend $5 million on Five Points parcels," the City expects the acquisition to cost $5.4 million in order to compensate 15 property owners for land, furniture, and equipment.  Three landowners have reached deals, while the ...

The City of Corona has announced plans to extend its eminent domain authority in a downtown area which Corona feels is blighted.  The planned extension could impact businesses in the area, but Corona is carving out residential properties.  According to Riverside Press-Enterprise reporter Leslie Parrilla, in her November 16 article, "Public hearing on eminent domain area":

Hundreds of businesses are in the Main and Sixth Street area covered by the action. Not included would be residential properties within the Merged Redevelopment Project Areas.

Corona's current plans do not ...

California Eminent Domain Report is a one-stop resource for everything new and noteworthy in eminent domain in California. We cover all aspects of eminent domain in California, including condemnation, inverse condemnation, and regulatory takings. We also keep track of current cases, project announcements, budget issues, legislative reform efforts, and report on all major California eminent domain conferences and seminars.

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