Committee Hears Eminent Domain Arguments

1 decade 3 years 11 months ago Tuesday, March 14 2006 Mar 14, 2006 Tuesday, March 14, 2006 9:18:15 PM CST March 14, 2006 in News

Phillis Hardy said local government destroyed her Sunset Hills neighborhood near St. Louis.

"Our neighborhood has been under attack by our city for a couple, actually five years, now," she said.

She testified in favor of a bill to ban eminent domain solely for private economic gain.

Other supporters said the bill is only one step in the right direction.

"There are people that believe that this bill, myself included, does a good job with valuation and with procedural issues," said Ron Calzone of Missouri First. "But, it doesn't get at the root problem. The root problem is constitutional and it requires a change in Missouri's constitution."

But, critics of the bill said limiting government's right to take private property could limit economic progress.

"The necessity of eminent domain is based upon the very simple concept that individual property rights must, at times, give way for the collective good," said Greg Smith.

The legislative committee resumed its hearing at 8:00 p.m. Tuesday because so many people wanted to testify.

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