Connecticut Politics and Elections: Coverage, Analysis, Maps and Commentary
It's just plain bad policy, ready to be abused by those with power to take from those who only have little. It's shameful.
On balance I support the decision.The homeowners have lost at every level of the court challenges blocking the City of New London from proceeding with a large-scale plan to build office space, a conference hotel, new residences and a park with a "riverwalk" along the Thames River.In my view the critical piece of the plan is the park area and riverwalk, a public area no less important than a school or highway that have taken individual's homes in the past.
Frank,The park and riverwalk I can see. That's public use in my opinion. However, it's the rest of the development that I have an issue with. Office space really isn't a public use, neither is the hotel or the ritzy new residential area.
Genghis,Isn't Ms. Kelco's limited to only challenging the taking of her property, described as being on the waterfront near Fort Trumbull.The other property owners may have had similiar grounds, if their property was on the sites of the proposed hotel, office space or new homes.A more savy developer would have offerd her one of the new homes.
In my view the critical piece of the plan is the park area and riverwalk, a public area no less important than a school or highway that have taken individual's homes in the past.I don't think its critical at all. Simply divide the land-grab into two parts: land still owned by the public, and land now owned by private corporations. The public land falls under eminant domain laws of yore, and is legit. However, any land that is no longer for public use is totally different, and isn't legitimate simply because they are building a public park next to it.
This decision just gives Wal-Mart the green light in invade your neighborhood.It's time to change this law. NO ONE would ever want the city to tell you that you have to move. It's just not right.
I suggest people read this http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/6/25/201045/439No new law was created in this decision.precident was upheld and if you get past the emotion and fear I think most will agree it was decided correctly.
The point is, not only does this decision expand the scope of Eminent Domain, it allows towns to essentially reposses property without assesing fair market value AND turn it over for a private use, not merely a public one. The neccesity of the existance of an eminent domain statute is not in question, and really never has been. Government needs a way that, if neccesary, it can purchase property for a fair value from citizens (albeit forcefully) in order to benefit the greater public good. In order to find many great examples of this happening, we can look back to the building of the railroads, which often required invoking eminent domain in order for the government to get the neccessary land, which, in the west, was usually taken from people's ranches. Also, remember that the railroads were all privately owned, even though they were publicly used as a neccesary means of public transportation. How does this differ from New London turning the land over to Pfizer? Do prescription drugs not benefit us all? Although I agree that the decision is wrong, it is difficult to define, in legal terms, when eminent domain is ok and when it isn't, as I have just shown. More cut and dry examples, like the interstate highway system, are obvious, since the highway is a pubic works project and publicly owned. Phew!
ctkeith,Democrats and other progressives really, really don't want to take the line that Armando so cavalierly and bloodlessly takes. The bottom line is this: people shouldn't be forced out of their homes for private economic development which does not result in a public use. Essentially, when eminent domain is used to take land, a public use of whatever is built should result. Highways, railroads, dams, parks and stadiums all have or result in public uses. Hotels, upscale homes, office space and trendy shops do not.This shouldn't be a party-line issue. Let's hope our legislature amends the law.
My point,and Armondos also is that nothing changed with this decision and the Supreme court welcomed state legislatures to modify their laws at will.Politicians everywhere will use this as a wedge issue but the decision followed precident to a tee.
Basically, the courts said that the current laws allowed this land to be taken; eminent domain defninitions allowed developers this enormous power. The legislature today had the opportunity to ammend the law to limit eminent domain, but it failed to do so.
I understand that New London wants to do what’s in their best interest, but I believe the rights of individuals should trump the “greater good” principle more often than not. The whole point of the eminent domain principle is to distinguish what reasons are good enough to accroach the rights of property owners. To me, there has to be an EXTREMELY good reason to chase someone out of their home and level it to the ground. Any business venture could be found to have benefits for the common good, if only for the financial benefit of the town. This decision could open a pandora’s box where any private developer could cite increased tax revenue to invoke eminent domain. This reminds me of the interstate commerce clause, and how it became more and more abused and torn away from its original intent. This decision basically makes the phrase “private property” null and void. My interpretation of our constitution as a whole leads me to believe individual rights are supposed to be held in higher esteem than the greater good, and this is not happening in New London.
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