The abuse of the power of eminent domain is a sore subject with me. This abuse is becoming wide spread across the country. Many times, land is taken from private citizens by force and given to private developers so that the land will now have a higher tax use for local government revenue. That may be true, but that does not make it the right thing to do. Private property rights are the basis for much of the settling of this nation; the reason we drew so many immigrants to pursue their dreams. It is my belief that eminent domain is an important tool for the public good. The new bypass for highway 70 through Clayton may be one good example. Below is an example of an abuse that chaps me. If I am elected to the Selma Town Council, I will work to ensure that the Town of Selma does not abuse this power. I found this story on a news site that I read daily.
GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS AND EMINENT DOMAIN
This little scenario is playing out in the Atlanta suburb of Sandy Springs. A group of Jewish parents worked for years to acquire a site for a new private Jewish high school. Two years ago they paid $20 million for a site for the new Weber School. Over the weekend they had a groundbreaking celebration. But wait! Something's wrong! Just a few weeks ago a letter was received from the Fulton County school system. Forget your construction plans, we want the site for an elementary school. If you don't agree to sell it to us by today, we'll just simply take it through eminent domain. Let's go ahead and state the obvious. Which facility would better serve the community? A Jewish high school with it's dedication to excellence, or yet another government school with the inevitability of mediocrity. Here's a link to the story.