A January 27 article in California Watch, "Eminent domain battles rage on despite Prop. 99," reflects the ongoing confusion that surrounds the efforts to reform eminent domain in the aftermath of the Supreme Court's 2005 Kelo decision.
The article's premise is that Proposition 99, approved by California's voters in 2008, did not stop what the author describes as "eminent domain abuse." But the case example that underlies the article reflects a fundamental misunderstanding about what Proposition 99 does (or does not do), and what people typically mean when they talk of "eminent ...
According to a Contra Costa Times article, "San Pablo tries to quell eminent domain fears with promise to residents," the City of San Pablo has promised residents that it will not use the power of eminent domain to acquire owner-occupied residences for purposes of private development. The promise is a bit odd, given the fact that Proposition 99, which Caifornia voters passed in 2008, is intended to prohibit exactly that use of eminent domain. (We'll leave aside for the moment whether Proposition 99 really does effectively prohibit the taking of residential property for ...
In December, we reported on Sierra Madre's decision to allow voters to decide whether the City should possess the power to condemn property for redevelopment purposes. On April 13, 2010, voters will decide the issue by ratifying or rejecting City Ordinance 1304, but for now, the measure has triggered some colorful debate.
On February 27, Susan Henderson offered a Mountain View News article "Eminent Domain Measure -- Yes or No?" She purports to analyze the measure in the broader context of recent eminent-domain-reform efforts, including California's Proposition 99, passed in ...
In November, we reported that the Barstow City Council would be deciding whether to reinstate the redevelopment agency's power of eminent domain. According to a January 20 Desert Dispatch article, "Eminent domain issue sparks fear among residents," the City Council has decided to table the issue until May.
According to the article, the redevelopment agency sees its eminent domain power as a necessary tool to remove blight in the area northwest of Interstate 15 near the outlet malls. But like most redevelopment efforts, the issue is drawing much public debate.
At the City ...
Everyone knows the sad tale of America's automotive industry: companies operating only through government subsidies and dealerships shutting their doors across the country. So when the City of Vista came up with a plan to "create a second downtown car dealership and boost sales tax revenue," one would think the public would embrace it.
But like many bold plans, this one has a wrinkle. While most of the property needed to facilitate the plan is available for purchase, including the existing North County Ford site, one additional parcel is needed.
According to North County Times ...
In June 2005, the United States Supreme Court issued its now infamous decision in Kelo v. City of New London. That decision made eminent domain and condemnation household terms (imagine my shock at hearing my previously unknown, niche area of practice discussed in normal, day-to-day conversations). The decision sparked tremendous controversy, as the Court ruled that the City of New London, Connecticut could condemn properties for redevelopment purposes for purely economic reasons.
In other words, the City did not even pretend that it was acting to eliminate blight (the ...
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