Eminent Domain

It's Your Property!

Eminent Domain – an action of the state to seize a citizen’s private property, expropriate property, or seize a citizen’s rights in property with due monetary compensation, but without the owner’s consent.

It is true that there are some justified uses for this, such as when it is put up for a vote that a new courthouse, post office, or other necessary government building must be built for the area it represents, however the majority of how eminent domain is exercised should be considered ill-gotten grounds.

For example, a few years ago the Kewpee on Allentown Rd was fighting to keep the front half of the parking lot facing Allentown Rd.  The city said they needed it to help traffic flow, but Kewpee did not want to give up parking lot space for it’s patrons for the minute amount the government wanted to pay.  The state took away 10-15 parking spots (and for those of us who do visit Allentown Kewpee, we know that sometimes that matters dramatically if we can find a place to park or not) and only wanted to pay ~$13,500 for the disruption of business it was going to cause Kewpee.

Many Allen County residents sided with Kewpee, and Kewpee in turn went to court, not only fighting for their right to the property they bought and maintained, but they also fought for the community.  Kewpee, in the end, did end up losing those parking spaces, however Ohio Department of Transportation did have to fork out $300,000 instead of the mere ~$13,500 they originally quoted.

The end of the story is, if you do not want to sell the land, the government should not be able to take it from you.

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