Virginia Constitutional Amendment Proposed To Restrict Eminent Domain | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia Constitutional Amendment Proposed To Restrict Eminent Domain

Play associated audio
A constitutional amendment that would put restrictions on eminent domain has found some backers in Virginia's capital.
Jen Goellnitz: http://www.flickr.com/photos/goellnitz/5277987497/
A constitutional amendment that would put restrictions on eminent domain has found some backers in Virginia's capital.

Under a proposed state constitutional amendment, Virginians could gain stronger property rights.

If voters approve, the guarantee would be inserted into Virginia's Bill of Rights and would permit eminent domain only when the property taken or damaged is for a true public use and not for private benefit or enhancing tax revenue. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli said it also defines what will be  just compensation to property-owners.

"The cost of the taking has to be borne by the public," says Cuccinelli. "If we're going to take your property for the benefit of the community, the community needs to bear that cost not just you, because you happen to live in the wrong place at the wrong time or your business was located there, or what have you. Fair and full compensation has to be made when property is taken or damaged. And that includes the loss of business profits and the loss of access when the takings occur."

Opponents say that will cost governments more, but supporters counter that it's fairer to the landowners. The State Capitol ceremony was packed with advocates, including the Virginia Farm Bureau, which just rolled out a campaign to win voter approval.

In order to get on a ballot, the measure would need to pass the state legislature and in the susequent session pass both houses by a simple majority.

NPR

Full Of Complexity And Ambivalence, 'American Sniper' Shows The Cost Of War

The film about a Navy SEAL whose service in Iraq made him a mythic figure has become a cultural lightning rod. But the squabbles are too simple for a low-key movie striking in its lack of stridency.
NPR

Live, From Iceland: It's A Hamburger

They call it "The last McDonald's hamburger in Iceland." Purchased more than five years ago, it has been displayed in the Na­tional Museum of Ice­land. Now it has its own webcam.
NPR

White House Won't Seek To End 529 College Tax Break

All 50 states and the District of Columbia sponsor 529 plans. Critics had called the proposal to limit them a tax hike on the middle class.
NPR

Yahoo Plans To Spin Off Remaining Stake In Alibaba

Yahoo has announced it will spin off its 15 percent stake in the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. Shareholders had been waiting for that decision. The move needs regulatory approval.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.