The Locker Room

Property Rights Bill Tracker

Posted by Daren Bakst at 3:42 PM

Let's take a look at some key property rights legislation and its status (I'll list more next week):

Annexation Reform

There only are two legitimate bills (a House and Senate version of the same bill): HB 645 and SB 494.

None of these bills have gone anywhere.  A House committee did hear a presentation on annexation reform by forced annexation proponent, David Lawrence.  This is the same David Lawrence that "significantly misled" the annexation study commission about what a major report stated on NC's annexation law.

The "leader" of the oligarchy, Basnight, spoke to the League the other day (from a Raleigh News & Observer article):

He told members of the North Carolina League of Municipalities, the association representing cities and towns, that annexation laws have helped keep urban areas strong and needed to be protected. But he signaled some changes would come.

"I don't believe you will be disappointed. That's the best of what I could say," Basnight told the mayors.

That sounds encouraging--I guess he's made his decision that the League will be happy and nothing will get in his way.

Eminent Domain Reform

1) The House introduced a bipartisan constitutional amendment (HB 1268) that is a cure that is worth than the disease.  At least they introduced an amendment, unlike the Senate.

2) The Senate believes that the government should seize businesses and nationalize them.  See the Alcoa debacle.

3) Yesterday, in a bipartisan vote of 45-1, the Senate supported providing more property protections (SB 600) for trees and dirt than for people and their homes.  The bill requires the government to have sought alternatives before seizing private property that have conservation easements.  The purpose is to protect the trees, grass, dirt, etc.  However, if the government wants to seize your house or church, it doesn't have to show that it sought alternatives!

Here's the even "funnier" part:  The conservation easement holder, not the property owner, has the right to challenge whether the government has sought alternatives.  The conservation easement holder could literally stop the property owner from selling his property to the government--the easement holder has more rights than the property owner!

Special kudos to Senator Phil Berger (R-Guilford, Rockingham), who was the only Senator that voted against the bill.  Unlike his colleagues, he does think people and their homes are at least as important as dirt.

Smoking Ban

The House passed their version of HB 2 and the Senate just passed their version.  Click here for the property rights implications.

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