Stockpiling property isn’t a good enough excuse for towns to take your land, court rules

“A national property rights advocate is hailing a New Jersey appeals court decision this week as one with “nationwide implications.”

A three-judge panel unanimously overruled a decision that allowed Glassboro to take property from a landowner through the use of eminent domain without designating the specific purpose for the acquisition.

The Institute for Justice, which filed a supporting legal brief in the case, said the ruling “affirms that this means the government must meet real burdens before it forcibly acquires property.”

“The importance of the decision is to say that there absolutely are limits on eminent domain power and those limits can and should be enforced by the courts,” said Robert McNamara, of the Institute for Justice.

The case sprung from a dispute in Glassboro in an area near the borough and Rowan University’s ongoing large-scale redevelopment effort to create a walkable downtown that connects the college and borough with a mix of retail, residential, and educational space. The borough sought to acquire a nearly one-acre property on the edge of the redevelopment area in September of 2017. That triggered the court action which concluded this week.”
read the entire article 9 January 2019.