Archive | 2020

The Saga of the Texas Bullet Train

          The proposed Dallas to Houston bullet train spans a large area in Texas.  The train will be able to transport riders from Houston to Dallas in 90 minutes.  But the project is stalled pending approval of the Federal Railroad Administration and property owners fighting eminent domain.           According to an article in today’s “The Dallas Morning News,” the opposition arises in areas in between the cities.  Certainly, these property owners have nothing to be excited about.           Interesting is the concern voiced by many of their fear that people… read more

Posted in Consequential Damages, Severance Damages, Texas Bullet Train, Uncategorized
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Mixing and Matching the Bill of Rights to Find Justice

          Timbs v Indiana, 139 S. Ct. 682 (2019) involved the seizure of a $42,000 Land Rover for a minor offense which had a maximum fine of $10,000.  The Supreme Court in a decision authorized by Justice Ruth Ginsburg held that the action allowed the Court to augment its Fourteenth Amendment by the “excessive fines clause” of the Eighth Amendment due process jurisprudence.  To demonstrate the importance of this protection against government’s ability to commandeer property, Justice Ginsburg traced what she called the “venerable lineage” of this protection to Magna… read more

Posted in Eighth Amendment, Exorbitant Fines, Uncategorized
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How’s Your Wall Going? Part II

          We previously wrote on this subject on February 10, 2020.           The New York Times on February 27, 2020 reports the desecration of tribal lands by the Trump administration’s scramble to build a wall at America’s border with Mexico.  The article written by Simon Romero reports the destruction of protected saguaro cactuses which can live for 200 years.  Ordinarily, cut down a saguaro and you can face years in prison.           The remains of chopped-up saguaros are now visible along a swath of the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona,… read more

Posted in Border Wall, Endangered Species Act, Takings, Tribal Lands, Uncategorized
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We Don’t Need No Stinking Appalachian Trail

          The 600-mile Atlantic coast pipeline is an 8-billion-dollar project.  The pipeline is cutting a scar across the Appalachian Mountains to move fracked natural gas from West Virginia to Virginia and North Carolina.           The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit vacated a permit allowing the pipeline to cross the trail deep underground.           Stretching 2,192 miles from Main to Georgia, the Appalachian National Scenic Trail is the longest and most popular footpath in the world.           The Supreme Court held argument as to what will happen to… read more

Posted in Appalachian Trail, Pipelines, Uncategorized
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What are Trade Fixtures in Condemnation?

          Trade fixtures are general those personal property improvements installed for business purposes.  In a recent Court of Appeals decision, Matter of City of New York (Kaiser Woodcraft Corp.), 11 NY3d 353 (2008), it was noted that “New York takes a broad view in evaluating what improvements are to be regarded as (trade) fixtures.”  Citing, Rose v State of New York, 24 NY2d 80, 86 (1969).           The classic definition of a compensable trade fixture is an item added to the premises with the intention that it becomes a permanent… read more

Posted in Trade fixtures, Uncategorized, Unit Rule
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