Archive | Public Purpose

Kelo Remains Untouched

The US Supreme Court denied a request to hear an appeal of a Chicago landowner whose property was condemned by the City to allow the expansion of the Bloomer Chocolate Company on June 25, 2021. The property owner took issue with the high court’s 2005 Kelo v City of New London decision, which said that local governments have the ability to take away private property for economic development use.  Three Justices, Brett Kavanaugh, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch said the Court should have heard the case, one shy of the… read more

Posted in Kelo, Public Purpose
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When A Park Just Isn’t A Park

We represent Brinkmann Hardware Corp. which owns a wooded lot in Mattituck, Suffolk County.  The family-owned business operates four hardware stores across Long Island.  The Town of Southold has used every trick to prevent the construction of the Mattituck hardware store, including imposing a nonsense moratorium. Southold lost every round in Court, so what does it do when it cannot stop construction, authorize condemning the land. The Institute for Justice filed suit in Federal District Court to stop the condemnation alleging a violation of due process and the Fifth Amendment. … read more

Posted in Condemnation, Park, Public Purpose, Public Use, Uncategorized
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PUBLIC USE MEANS JUST ABOUT ANY USE

          Arguing that the project will benefit a private party and that the proposed condemnation will there by violate the constitutional restraints against the condemning private party to give another private party will fail as long as it could be said the public purpose is dominant.  See Waldo’s, Inc. v Vill. Of Johnson City, 74 NY2d 718, 720 (1989); see also Yonkers Cmty. Dev. Agency v Morris, 27 NY2d 478, 482 (1975).           Virtually any purpose will be acceptable including the condemnation of a historic waterfront for a shopping mall… read more

Posted in Public Benefit, Public Purpose, Public Use, Uncategorized
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Is the acquisition of private property for affordable housing a public use?

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced plans to acquire privately owned residential buildings and convert them into affordable housing in an effort to reduce the City’s homeless problem. The City is currently paying property owners to house homeless people in apartments in the buildings that the City wants to acquire. The City’s plan is to acquire the buildings and transfer them to nonprofit companies that will convert all of the apartments in the buildings into affordable units. The homeless people will stay in the affordable units. If the… read more

Posted in Condemnation, Eminent Domain, Public Purpose
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WIND-POWER LINE BLOWN AWAY BY ILLINOIS SUPREME COURT

The Illinois Supreme Court rendered a decision on September 21, 2017 which upheld a lower court decision that an application filed by Clean Line Energy, a Houston Company, may not use eminent domain to acquire land to develop a 500 mile transmission line designed to carry wind generated power through the State of Illinois.  Illinois Landowners Alliance NRF v Illinois Commerce Commission, 2017 IL 121302. The basis for the decision was that Clean Line Energy does not qualify as a “public utility.”  The $1.8 billion high voltage line has been… read more

Posted in Pipeline Takings, Public Purpose, Public Utility
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