Eminent Domain Hits Home

1 decade 2 years 11 months ago Friday, November 18 2005 Nov 18, 2005 Friday, November 18, 2005 9:29:22 AM CST November 18, 2005 in News

Kenny Mueller can see the capitol from his front yard.  There, a task force discussed if it's legal for the government to take over private property like his to bring more money to the area.

"When you're just living happily in your home or happily opperating your business in a profitable, legal manner, when something comes along and threatens your ability to maintain that ownership of that property, everyone takes an interest," explained task force member Chuck Gross.

The U.S. Supreme Court in July expanded eminent domain making it legal for a government to demand the sale of private property for more than public works.  The Supreme Court ruling also allows the government to take over a small business and give it to a larger retailer with the aim of boosting economic growth.

Mueller has lived in his house with his family for about six years.  He says he'd be willing to give it up if it was important.(KENNY MUELLER/HOMEOWNER)

"As long as the individual is getting a fair market value for their property," said Mueller.  "But's obviously on an individual situation. I don't think it should simply be we're gonna come over and we can take your property if need be."

The task force will present preliminary findings in October that might modify eminent domain in Missouri.  The governor might urge the legislature to adopt the task force's recommendations.

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