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LITIGATING THE PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE IN NEW YORK. A PARK IS A PARK UNLESS IT’S NOT.

          New York’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, decided Matter of Glick v Harvey.[1]  The appeals court affirmed the reversal of a lower court order which enjoined New York University from beginning any construction in connection with its expansion project that would result in any alienation of three parcels of land found by the Court to be public parkland, unless and until the State Legislature authorizes the alienation of any parkland to be impacted by the project.  The decision itself provides very little factual information.  According to an article… read more

Posted in Condemnation, parklands, Public Trust Doctrine, 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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JUST COMPENSATION FOR GOODWILL

          The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires the court to award just and fair compensation.  But goodwill is rarely compensated.  Rather the courts will utilize a market approach unless property is truly unique, or to be exactly operated as before by the condemnor.  Matter of Nassau County (Lido Boulevard), 43 AD2d 45 (2d Dept 1973), afd. 39 NY2d 958 (1976).           State and federal courts have long ignored the mandate to pay just compensation for the goodwill of a business.  In New York, trade fixtures used for… read more

Posted in Going Concern, Goodwill, Uncategorized
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TRUMP’S WALL – A MIRAGE IN THE DESERT

          Donald Trump has made building a wall along the southwest border a cornerstone of his administration.  Trump has misappropriated government funds including $3.6 billion in money which was allocated for military construction to build the wall, but there is one necessary element missing, “the land.”  Congress – even while under Republican control, has repeatedly refused to appropriate the money demanded by the President to fund the project.           There are 1,350 miles of the southern border which is unfenced.  He originally wanted to fence 1,000 miles, but has reduced… read more

Posted in Border Wall, Ineffective Eminent Domain, Property Rights, Uncategorized
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DOES ACQUIRING PROPERTY TO RETURN IT TO PRODUCTIVE USE SERVE A VALID PUBLIC PURPOSE? OR, IS LAND BANKING SPECULATIVE AND IMPROPER?

          The Second Department handed down two decisions in two consecutive weeks deciding challenges to determinations adopted to condemn property by eminent domain for the purpose of returning the property to productive use in accordance with the City of Yonkers Master Plan in two separate urban renewal plans.  Matter of One Point St. Inc. v City of Yonkers Indus. Dev. Agency, ____ AD3d ____, 2019 NY Slip Op 01769 (March 13, 2019); Matter of City of New York v Yonkers Industrial Development Agency, ____ AD3d ____, 2019 NY Slip Op… read more

Posted in Challenges to Condemnation, EDPL Sec. 207, Land Banking, Speculative Taking, Uncategorized
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