Eminent domain again before the legislature
RALEIGH -- One of the stranger aspects of Republican control of the North Carolina legislature is how long it has taken GOP lawmakers to get around to something that, based on public sentiment and party ideology, ought to be a slam dunk.
It was seven years ago when Republican Rep. Paul "Skip" Stam, then a member of the minority party in the legislature, first introduced a bill that would allow voters to amend the state constitution to bar local governments from using the power of condemnation for economic development purposes.
Stam filed that legislation soon after the landmark Kelo v. City of New London, Conn., decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, which upheld the use of eminent domain for economic development purposes. (In that case, the city had condemned private homes to make way for a ...