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Friday, June 24, 2005

That didn't take long: Texas city moves on businesses in wake of Supremes ruling

It's already started: Freeport, Texas is using yesterday's Supreme Court decision to wreck an established business and giving the land to a wealthier developer. From HoustonChronicle.com:

Freeport moves to seize 3 properties

Court's decision empowers the city to acquire the site for a new marina
Chronicle Correspondent

FREEPORT - With Thursday's Supreme Court decision, Freeport officials instructed attorneys to begin preparing legal documents to seize three pieces of waterfront property along the Old Brazos River from two seafood companies for construction of an $8 million private boat marina.

The court, in a 5-4 decision, ruled that cities may bulldoze people's homes or businesses to make way for shopping malls or other private development. The decision gives local governments broad power to seize private property to generate tax revenue.

"This is the last little piece of the puzzle to put the project together," Freeport Mayor Jim Phillips said of the project designed to inject new life in the Brazoria County city's depressed downtown area.

Over the years, Freeport's lack of commercial and retail businesses has meant many of its 13,500 residents travel to neighboring Lake Jackson, which started as a planned community in 1943, to spend money. But the city is hopeful the marina will spawn new economic growth.

"This will be the engine that will drive redevelopment in the city," City Manager Ron Bottoms said...

Ummmm... Mr. Bottoms: where did the Founding Fathers ever intend for it to be that economic development supersedes the right to personal property?

They didn't. But this was a central tenet of "national socialism" in Germany and Mussolini's fascism back in the day.