WASHINGTON, D.C. – December 15, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Congressman Allen Boyd (D-North Florida) today introduced bipartisan legislation that would help protect private property owners from becoming victims of eminent domain seizures by state and local governments. The Strengthening the Ownership of Private Property (STOPP) Act would significantly discourage governments from taking property from one private party and giving it to another private party through a series of aggressive financial disincentives. Congressman Boyd has been a long-time proponent of protecting the rights of property owners, having introduced similar legislation in past years.
“Governments should not have the ability to take away a person’s home, business or land to benefit other individuals,” said Congressman Boyd. “The STOPP Act is a comprehensive piece of legislation that will help protect the rights of our homeowners and small businesses by penalizing the confiscation of private property for private gain.”
If eminent domain abuses occur, the STOPP Act would prevent states and localities from receiving federal economic assistance on all economic development projects – not just those upon which abuses occur – until the dispute is reconciled. Additionally, it guarantees that victims of abuses receive fair market value for their property and appropriate moving expenses.
The STOPP Act is specifically meant to address a 2005 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that allows governments to use eminent domain to take away private property and transfer it to someone else for their private gain.
Congressman Boyd introduced the bipartisan STOPP Act along with six co-sponsors: Rep. Peter DeFazio, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, Rep. Frank Lucas, Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, Rep. James Sensenbrenner and Rep. Lamar Smith.
Christopher Cashman, 202-225-5235