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  1. #1
    Del Rio Guest

    We no longer have property rights.

    "Supreme Court Rules Cities May Seize Homes

    By HOPE YEN
    The Associated Press
    Thursday, June 23, 2005; 10:43 AM

    WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that local governments may seize people's homes and businesses _ even against their will _ for private economic development.

    It was a decision fraught with huge implications for a country with many areas, particularly the rapidly growing urban and suburban areas, facing countervailing pressures of development and property ownership rights.

    The 5-4 ruling represented a defeat for some Connecticut residents whose homes are slated for destruction to make room for an office complex. They argued that cities have no right to take their land except for projects with a clear public use, such as roads or schools, or to revitalize blighted areas.

    As a result, cities now have wide power to bulldoze residences for projects such as shopping malls and hotel complexes in order to generate tax revenue.

    Local officials, not federal judges, know best in deciding whether a development project will benefit the community, justices said.

    "The city has carefully formulated an economic development that it believes will provide appreciable benefits to the community, including _ but by no means limited to _ new jobs and increased tax revenue," Justice John Paul Stevens wrote for the majority.

    He was joined by Justice Anthony Kennedy, David H. Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer.

    At issue was the scope of the Fifth Amendment, which allows governments to take private property through eminent domain if the land is for "public use."

    Susette Kelo and several other homeowners in a working-class neighborhood in New London, Conn., filed suit after city officials announced plans to raze their homes for a riverfront hotel, health club and offices.

    New London officials countered that the private development plans served a public purpose of boosting economic growth that outweighed the homeowners' property rights, even if the area wasn't blighted.

    Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who has been a key swing vote on many cases before the court, issued a stinging dissent. She argued that cities should not have unlimited authority to uproot families, even if they are provided compensation, simply to accommodate wealthy developers.

    The lower courts had been divided on the issue, with many allowing a taking only if it eliminates blight.

    "Any property may now be taken for the benefit of another private party, but the fallout from this decision will not be random," O'Connor wrote. "The beneficiaries are likely to be those citizens with disproportionate influence and power in the political process, including large corporations and development firms."

    She was joined in her opinion by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, as well as Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas."

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Thoughts on this anyone?

    Any idea what the reinbursment is for the homeowner is it the original value of the home, or the current value?

    Anyone know?

  2. #2
    V4L's Avatar
    V4L
    V4L is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    I havent botten property yet.. But i've heard it is current value.. I believe government bought my grandma's property to build a church and she got the current value.. I think they should pay more then that though

  3. #3
    cajunvike's Avatar
    cajunvike is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    "Any property may now be taken for the benefit of another private party, but the fallout from this decision will not be random," O'Connor wrote. "The beneficiaries are likely to be those citizens with disproportionate influence and power in the political process, including large corporations and development firms."

    Kinda stunned that Scalia sided with the dissent...Thomas was up his azz as usual.
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    THAT IS BULL SH@%!. THIS IS AMERICA FOR PETE'S SAKE! THE GOVERNMENT IS OUT HAND! HOW WOULD YOU FEEL IF YOU PUT ALL YOU HAD INTO A PLACE AND THE GOVERNMENT AND BIG BUSINESS COMES ALONG AND SAYS YOU HAVE TO MOVE AND THIS IS HOW MUCH I'M PAYING YOU FOR IT! MOTHER F@#$%^# PIECE OF S@#$.
    6949da5ce3db19514b6088f4f00ffabd

  5. #5
    V4L's Avatar
    V4L
    V4L is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    I think its bull shit too.. They shouldn't be able to do that unless its very important and needs to get done.. My uncle got his house tooken away that he was saving up for for years and they built a circuit city there.. and it gets no biz pretty much

  6. #6
    Viking_Spirit is offline Star Spokesman
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    Seems like bullshit to me...but I haven't looked enough into the issue to have a final consensus.

    Guns don t kill people. Chuck Norris kills people.

  7. #7
    ColoradoVike is offline Pro-Bowler
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    eminent domain has been in city planner's tool box for the past century. In this sense, the powers grated to cities is nothing new. I think the novel part is that cities can now take property for private development that supposedly will have public benefit. In the past, eminent domain powers were permissible only if there was direct public benefit, e.g., seizing property to build an interstate highway or public utility right of ways.

    As far as the compensation angle, from what I understand, governments will reimburse owners based on the value of their home that is used to calculate property taxes. in many cases, this is less than what a person could get in a competitive real estate market.

    I don't find this that alarming because again this ruling just widens the power of eminent domain a little further. but, on the bright side, consider that these powers are given to LOCAL governments which are usually very responsive to citizen input. If there is a proposal in your town to seize property for other, private use, you will likely know about it before it becomes legally sanctioned and you can gear up to put a stop to it.

    EDIT: and not all local governments will apply this ruling in the same way. Just because a city can use this power doesn't mean that they will. For many property rights-concerned public officials, they may use this in very selective instances, especially where the benefit to the common good far outweighs the dismissal of private property rights (yet, they do say the road to hell is paved with good intentions). Look for this to become a campaign issue in local elections.

  8. #8
    Del Rio Guest

    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    "just widens the power of eminent domain a little further"

    They always widen the rules a little bit...and a little bit more..

    And the local government aspect of this gives me no comfort. A mega Wal-mart is going to offer a huge hunk of cash to my local government I'm out of there. And they chaulk it up to public use.

    Zoning after the fact to me is also a basic place we went wrong on this issue.

    What ever rights you had on that land you bought it etc. you should have in perpetuity unless the Government is willing to compensate you for the difference.

    I do not like this ruling for it opens the door to even more graft and corruption in local govt.


    The American Democracy is also about protectiong the rights of the minority against the tyranny of the majority, one should never forget that or put it aside for it will bite you in the ass one day too if you do.

  9. #9
    Viking_Spirit is offline Star Spokesman
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    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    I've looked into this more...and this is indeed BS.

    Guns don t kill people. Chuck Norris kills people.

  10. #10
    Del Rio Guest

    Re: We no longer have property rights.

    The story is a fake, or you think that the decision is BS?

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