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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 2/9/2006 1:26:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2006 4:46:22 AM EDT by OneMoreMag]
Eminent Domain bites back!

I love it when a City grows too big for its britches and abuses the power of Eminent Domain to seize private property and then gets hit where it hurts - in the pocket! The guy in the article had his property seized for public steps leading down to a river that flows through the middle of downtown. It is strange though that the seizure of his property took place at the exact same time as when a private developer was redeveloping adjacent property into high price offices, stores, and lodging. He took the city of Greenville, SC to court and was awarded 2.3 million, over three times what the City wanted to pay.

This story goes back several years and is quite interesting. One of the two guys still to have his day in court ran for mayor when his property was being seized. Unfortunately he lost.

ETA: UPDATE!

All verdicts in! City owes millions!

The other two adjacent land owner's cases have come in. See the link above. The city owes millions! Both juries gave judgements to the former land owners that were more than even the land owner's private appraisers appraised their properties for! It looks like juries are starting to get tired of the government abusing eminent domain.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:34:27 PM EDT
But he still was FORCED off his property
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:36:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By OneMoreMag:
Eminent Domain bites back!

I love it when a City grows too big for its britches and abuses the power of Eminent Domain to seize private property and then gets hit where it hurts - in the pocket! The guy in the article had his property seized for public steps leading down to a river that flows through the middle of downtown. It is strange though that the seizure of his property took place at the exact same time as when a private developer was redeveloping adjacent property into high price offices, stores, and lodging. He took the city of Greenville, SC to court and was awarded 2.3 million, over three times what the City wanted to pay.

This story goes back several years and is quite interesting. One of the two guys still to have his day in court ran for mayor when his property was being seized. Unfortunately he lost.



I don't know for sure but I've seen it before. If the guy had been willing to build a public access on his own, or heaven forbid charge for access, he most likely would have been prohibited from it.

If that same developer had tried to purchase a strip or an easement, that porbably would have been prohibited as well through zoning regulations.

Good on him. I hate to see everyone suing all the time but maybe this will slow a few of these cities down.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:37:10 PM EDT
Yes, he was forced off his property which is wrong - but at least the jury gave him 3 times what the city wanted to...
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:37:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
But he still was FORCED off his property



Sounds like he only lost a small strip. Important? Yes. But at least he made them pay.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:38:42 PM EDT
"Fair market value" is a very subjective term.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:46:09 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/9/2006 1:46:43 PM EDT by Bubblehead597]

Originally Posted By ArmedAggie:

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
But he still was FORCED off his property



Sounds like he only lost a small strip. Important? Yes. But at least he made them pay.



Not only important, but KEY. He still lost his property because of greedy counselmen laying out the red carpet for more tax base. PURE B.S.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:46:38 PM EDT
Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

While I am irritated by emminent domain, the founding fathers did authorize it, but required "just compensation".
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:48:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ghengiskhabb:
Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

While I am irritated by emminent domain, the founding fathers did authorize it, but required "just compensation".



The recent problems stem from the interpretation of tax revenue as a public use.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:54:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ASU1911:

The recent problems stem from the interpretation of tax revenue as a public use.




Yep. But not in this case.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 1:56:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ArmedAggie:

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
But he still was FORCED off his property



Sounds like he only lost a small strip. Important? Yes. But at least he made them pay.



No, he lost the whole lot, with 3 1920's buildings on it.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 2:01:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
But he still was FORCED off his property



At least is was for PUBLIC USE as allowed by the Constitution and not for PRIVATE USE as the recent Supreme Court decision allows.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 2:09:53 PM EDT
The property will be used for the public but it is HEAVILY tied into a private development. If you were to look at the seized property in question and the neighboring property a developer redeveloped you would think the stairs were part of the redevelopment. It is obvious the city was in with the developer with this.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 2:36:46 PM EDT
So the city had to pay what the property was worth! What a rip-off!!!! Taxpayers expect their elected officials to be better scammers than that. Recall the incompetent thieves.
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 3:13:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/9/2006 3:16:49 PM EDT by BangStick1]
The bad thing is it takes YEARS [as much as 10yrs] to go thru the court system just to win your settlement.

Then you have to go back to court to sue again just to compel the gov't to pay up.

They need to adjust the laws to make the process not take more than a year.

If the gov't can't pay the price within a year's time, they shouldn't claim the property.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 4:48:47 AM EDT
Bump for update - see bottom of initial post.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 4:58:10 AM EDT
city lost the case and have to pay settelment.
taxpayers pay for the settelmant.
the mayor, the councilmen,city officals or whoever decides on doing this stuff. should have to pay out of their own pockets and not the taxpayers when they do shit like this and lose.

Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:00:14 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Silesius:
"Fair market value" is a very subjective term.


Especially when there's a gun pointed at your head during the negotiations.

"It's an offer you can't refuse."
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:05:15 AM EDT
The $ does come from the taxpayers but hopefully this will show that the voters are waking up and will vote these jokers out of office.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:21:15 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2006 5:21:47 AM EDT by photoman]

Originally Posted By SteyrAUG:

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
But he still was FORCED off his property



At least is was for PUBLIC USE as allowed by the Constitution and not for PRIVATE USE as the recent Supreme Court decision allows.



Ahh but they didn't want it for public access till someone else started building developments next door. So was it really for public use, or was it really just using the "public use" as a means to not cause a big stink and make it "legit"
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:36:04 AM EDT



he didn't "win" anything. he just spent lots of money on lawyers to get back some of his tax dollars that have been extorted from his own wallet over the years. it doesn't cost the .gov anything. they'll just hike up taxes a little the following year to make up the difference.


Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:42:32 AM EDT
Eminent Domain abuse can be cured fairly simply by requiring the government agency to pay the owner double the appraised price for the property. If the governments plan for that property is going to be such a great boom to the economy then paying couble the price should be a drop in the bucket for them. If it's not, well then they really need to rethink their plans.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:42:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ghengiskhabb:
Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

While I am irritated by emminent domain, the founding fathers did authorize it, but required "just compensation".



They also didn't intend for the gooberment to take church properties and hand them over to developers as a means of getting more tax revenue......But that is happening.

The answer to this, since the courts cannot pull their heads out of their asses on it, is to place SEVERE restrictions on the use of ED at the state level.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 6:33:06 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 7:07:13 AM EDT
So the city lost money, geez I wonder who's going to pay for that?
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 7:09:02 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TimJ:
I hardly see where confiscating land for private development is public use, no matter how much revenue it generates. Someone is gonna pull a Henry Bowman on these cheesedicks some day.

Bastards up here did it to a family farm. Guy finally sold for a LOT of money, but Fidelity Investments wanted the land for their campus-just so the border would be complete and the landscaping pretty-and got the state involved. BULLSHIT.


Drove past that site every weekend for years. I know exactly what you are talking about.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 8:32:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By OneMoreMag:
Yes, he was forced off his property which is wrong - but at least the jury gave him 3 times what the city wanted to...



So? Maybe the property wasn't for sale? Maybe he was holding out to make the developer give him some mad phat cash for it?
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 9:23:55 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ghengiskhabb:

While I am irritated by emminent domain, the founding fathers did authorize it, but required "just compensation".



notice it's "JUST" not "FAIR" compensation. You should get the market value to replace either your current property or appaised value what the new one will be worth WHICHEVER IS HIGHER.

That would make ED less common.

"We can't take his land. We're building a 40 million dollar development! We'll owe him 10 million!"

or

"We can't take his land. We're building a football stadium with a 40 year life span and yearly revenue of 100million! We'll owe him 400 million!"
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 9:34:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By OneMoreMag:
Yes, he was forced off his property which is wrong - but at least the jury gave him 3 times what the city wanted to...


So? Maybe the property wasn't for sale? Maybe he was holding out to make the developer give him some mad phat cash for it?



TheOtherDave - I'm not sure what you are getting at here. I know that the property wasn't for sale before the City took it by ED. Private property does have to be taken at times for things like roads through ED, but that is not this case. The City based part of their reasoning on placing the steps where they did on a study done by a local university that said there needed to be more access to the river. That was a minor part of the study and many major parts were ignored.

What I am happy w/ is that all owners got more than what they even thought their properties were worth. Now would you go to court saying your property is worth X and expect to get X?...you would probably expect to get less than X so when the jury comes back and gives you more that is great!

Again, the owners shouldn't have been forced to give up their properties if they didn't want to move no matter the price.

Also, look @ the picture here
the 3 buildings in question fronted the road on the left of the pic. Now does it look to you like the steps are public property to provide access to an adjacent river or does it look like they are part of the new private development? It would look pretty bad to have three old two story buildings sitting on top of where those steps are and blocking the front of the nice new development. Here is a pic of what the buildings looked like after an adjacent building behind them was demolished.

Score 1 for the property owners.
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 9:35:41 AM EDT
ANother reason I live in South Carolina.

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