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Mother, son won't budge from home (City of St. Louis)
St. Louis-Post Dispatch via stltoday.com ^ | June 16, 2005 | Tim O'Neil

Posted on 06/17/2005 5:55:44 AM PDT by tahiti

Reba June Thompson and her son, Howard, at 7016 South Grand Avenue, are the last holdouts against a $40 million shopping-center project under way near Carondelet Park in St. Louis. One by one, their 19 neighbors took the money and moved on. Demolition crews moved in. The city has taken the Thompsons to court, trying to claim their well-maintained brick bungalow by eminent domain.

Desco Group, the Schnuck family's development company, has bought most of the 30 acres near Interstate 55 and Loughborough Avenue for its Loughborough Commons shopping center.

In March, the city pledged $11 million in tax subsidies for the new center.

Two weeks ago, St. Louis Circuit Judge Timothy J. Wilson held three days of hearings and is awaiting written arguments from the lawyers. There's no word yet on when he will rule.

The family's lawyer, Michael A. Wolff, said the Thompsons' battle is a long-shot effort that rests almost entirely upon a case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. In February, the court heard arguments over a similar battle in New London, Conn., where some residents don't want to sell for a city-sponsored commercial development.

Without the hope for a friendly decision, Wolff said, Missouri law and court decisions would be all against them. But he thinks the precedent is wrong.

"The condemnation law as it has evolved in Missouri is atrocious," said Wolff.

Alderman Matt Villa, D-11th Ward, who sponsored the project, said it will be good for the city and the neighborhood. Villa said most of the Thompsons' former neighbors were pleased with Desco's offers.

"I have a lot of empathy for the Thompsons. They plain don't want to give up their home," Villa said. "But we can't allow one property to derail the whole project."

(Excerpt) Read more at stltoday.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Government; US: Missouri
KEYWORDS: eminentdomain; kelo; privateproperty; tyranny
Democrat Alderman Matt Villa says "we can't allow one property to derail the whole project."

Missouri Constitution, Bill of Rights, Article I,

Section 28. That private property shall not be taken for private use with or without compensation, unless by consent of the owner, except for private ways of necessity, and except for drains and ditches across the lands of others for agricultural and sanitary purposes, in the manner prescribed by law; and that when an attempt is made to take private property for a use alleged to be public, the question whether the contemplated use be public shall be judicially determined without regard to any legislative declaration that the use is public.

1 posted on 06/17/2005 5:55:44 AM PDT by tahiti
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To: tahiti

error

HTTP Web Server: Couldn't find design note - stlouiscitycounty/story/896CC32920CE04F08625702300


2 posted on 06/17/2005 6:00:55 AM PDT by Tax-chick ("Children don't need counting, because whatever number you have, you never have enough.")
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To: tahiti

My city is watching the CT case. They want to use eminent domain to force a BK out. People have to start fighting the improper, illegal and unconstitutional use of eminent domain for the project du jour. This was not our Founding Fathers' intention. But then again, those self-evident truths are seemingly not so self-evident to dumbed down Americans.


3 posted on 06/17/2005 6:02:41 AM PDT by sageb1
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To: tahiti

"I have a lot of empathy for the Thompsons. They plain don't want to give up their home," Villa said. "But we can't allow one property to derail the whole project."


Uh yeah we can Scooter.

They need to take their bloody shopping sprawl somewhere else and the Government needs to be made to stop this kind of crap NOW.


4 posted on 06/17/2005 6:03:41 AM PDT by Leatherneck_MT (3-7-77 (No that's not a Date))
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To: tahiti

"...the Thompsons' battle is a long-shot effort..."

Just plain sad.....


5 posted on 06/17/2005 6:04:27 AM PDT by CSM ( If the government has taken your money, it has fulfilled its Social Security promises. (dufekin))
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To: sageb1

What's a BK?


6 posted on 06/17/2005 6:08:19 AM PDT by Tax-chick ("Children don't need counting, because whatever number you have, you never have enough.")
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Comment #7 Removed by Moderator

To: Leatherneck_MT
I don't especially care about the sprawl complaint. To the city, this is plainly a quest for taxes. The city has apparently decided to side with the squatters against the landowners and ordered the landowners to settle for less than they deem fair. This really comes down to answering the question, who owns your property?

The homeowners have every right to extract every penny they think they deserve for their property. If the contractor requires their property, he will pay the bill. Every voter of that town should have been paying close attention and should be heading to the next election prepared to sweep clean their legislature.

8 posted on 06/17/2005 6:13:20 AM PDT by Sgt_Schultze
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To: tahiti; 1stMarylandRegiment; 47carollann; A Citizen Reporter; A Cyrenian; adrian; AFLoggie; ...
Missouri Bump

The link doesn't work but the story is one we've heard again and again.

Low volume ping list
FReepmail me to be on or off this list.

9 posted on 06/17/2005 6:14:01 AM PDT by Just another Joe (Monthly donors make better lovers. Ask my wife.)
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To: Individual Rights in NJ
Why don't they just Mugabe it?

Show up with bulldozers and wreck the place.

The (former) owners might complain, but who listens to homeless drifters anyway?

10 posted on 06/17/2005 6:16:14 AM PDT by ZOOKER (proudly killing threads since 1998)
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To: tahiti

I don't think they should be allowed to take this person's property. That said, half the time I think these cases are just to squeeze more money out of the shopping center. If all your neighbors have sold, why would you stay there?

My guess is, if they were to abandon the project, the homeowner would not be as happy as she claims. I can see not wanting to give up a family farm. But a block house, with the neighborhood abandoned?


11 posted on 06/17/2005 6:18:41 AM PDT by I still care (America is not the problem - it is the solution..)
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To: Just another Joe
Desco Group, the Schnuck family's development company

That's about all I needed to see.

12 posted on 06/17/2005 6:19:02 AM PDT by StarCMC (My birthday was yesterday ~ can I still have a smooch?)
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To: tahiti
The fact is, this property is worth far, far more than they will get by taking the offered terms.

It's worth ten times whatever the current offer is - and the developers know it.

Eminent domain is just a way for developers to use the government to artificially deflate property prices - it's fundamentally anti-business.

13 posted on 06/17/2005 6:19:21 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave troops and their Commander-in-Chief)
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To: I still care
That said, half the time I think these cases are just to squeeze more money out of the shopping center.

What's wrong with that?

If you want something in America you're supposed to pay for it.

14 posted on 06/17/2005 6:20:31 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave troops and their Commander-in-Chief)
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To: ZOOKER

Hillary has quite a few names in her Rolodex of people that could "persuade" them to move. Or so I hear.

If the city or developer wants the property, pay what the seller wants for it or leave then the hell alone.


15 posted on 06/17/2005 6:22:01 AM PDT by listenhillary (Socialists have only killed 100 million. We'll never learn will we?)
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To: tahiti
From The Constitution of The United States, Amendment V

"No person shall...be deprived of Life, Liberty, or Property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation."

If the folks don't want to sell, feeling that no compensation in this case is "just", then they don't have to.

How much more of this can we take?

16 posted on 06/17/2005 6:22:54 AM PDT by USMC79to83
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To: tahiti

There's no state constitution that allows the government to take the property of one person and give it to another private owner.

Government may take private land for "public use" under eminent domain. Public use is just that - schools, roads, utility easements.

Courts and crooked politicians have redefined public use into the "public good." Public good is nothing more than the American version of the Marxist "common good."

The definition of public good can be expanded by crooked politicians into anything they want it to mean. If private property can be taken for the public good, private property ceases to exist and we'll soon be living in a totalitarian country.


17 posted on 06/17/2005 6:27:59 AM PDT by sergeantdave (Marxism has not only failed to promote human freedom, it has failed to produce food)
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To: Just another Joe

Time is money. Offer an undisclosed settlement amount not to be revealed and allow the homemakers the choice of a new home wherever they so choose. Then doze the damn place.


18 posted on 06/17/2005 6:30:01 AM PDT by Tumbleweed_Connection (http://hour9.blogspot.com/)
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To: tahiti

The condemnation law as it has evolved in New Jersey.


19 posted on 06/17/2005 6:30:21 AM PDT by Calpernia (Breederville.com)
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To: Leatherneck_MT

bump!


20 posted on 06/17/2005 6:31:22 AM PDT by Calpernia (Breederville.com)
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To: tahiti

Correct link:

http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/stlouiscitycounty/story/896CC32920CE04F0862570230011C196?OpenDocument


21 posted on 06/17/2005 6:32:41 AM PDT by Tatze (I voted for John Kerry before I voted against him!)
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To: sergeantdave
>>>>The definition of public good can be expanded by crooked politicians into anything they want it to mean.

And it is ABUSED!!!!
22 posted on 06/17/2005 6:35:19 AM PDT by Calpernia (Breederville.com)
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To: tahiti
Alderman Matt Villa, D-11th Ward, who sponsored the project, said it will be good for the city and the neighborhood. Villa said most of the Thompsons' former neighbors were pleased with Desco's offers.

And here I thought the Dims were the party of the little people, the underdogs, the givers of voice to the voiceless against the big, bad corporations....

23 posted on 06/17/2005 6:36:19 AM PDT by Personal Responsibility (Why is it that the wackiest people get to define reality?)
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To: Individual Rights in NJ
I agree, or they can just build the freaking shopping center around his house. Its his property, the rest is theirs, what's the problem?

That is true. I have no way of looking up the picture, but a lone holdout in NYC forced a new officebuilding to build completely around her. They offered scads of cash. She did not want cash, she wanted the only home she knew for decades, and she got to keep it. (After she died, I believe they took the rest.)
24 posted on 06/17/2005 6:36:24 AM PDT by sittnick (There's no salvation in politics.)
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To: Personal Responsibility

"And here I thought the Dims were the party of the little people, the underdogs, the givers of voice to the voiceless against the big, bad corporations...."

They are

Until they see a larger Tax spigot.


25 posted on 06/17/2005 6:41:15 AM PDT by Leatherneck_MT (3-7-77 (No that's not a Date))
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To: tahiti

The concept of "private property" is a sad joke nowadays.

The government can and will take your property if it is their best interest to do so.


26 posted on 06/17/2005 6:42:56 AM PDT by Skooz (Perverts used to have to hang around public toilets. Now, they run our schools - Travis McGee)
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To: tahiti

Eminent domain is being used to push out owners in my corrupt small town, too, here in NJ. And isn't it a kicker how a city will use the family's tax dollars to subsidize the business that would kick them out of their home?!

It's terrible, but this MO family could find itself in the same situation as some homeowners I've noticed in Atlantic City where here and there you'll see a small home engulfed by huge casinos. The MO family might not like their property so much once the shopping center is up, but the decision should still be theirs.


27 posted on 06/17/2005 6:43:37 AM PDT by Tired of Taxes (News junkie here)
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To: StarCMC
But they're the friendliest stores in town!
28 posted on 06/17/2005 6:45:51 AM PDT by Repealthe17thAmendment (Is this field required?)
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To: Individual Rights in NJ
Once you buy land, it should be yours no matter what, otherwise, what is the point of living by our laws?Sounds good, but just try not paying your property taxes or go though your parents probate and you will find out who really owns your property. When the people allowed themselves to be flim-flamed into property taxes they gave up their rights to own real property. That's why the landed poor are no more.
29 posted on 06/17/2005 6:48:18 AM PDT by fella ("Ya don work, Ya don eat. Savvy?")
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To: Repealthe17thAmendment

Yeah right.


30 posted on 06/17/2005 6:50:42 AM PDT by StarCMC (My birthday was yesterday ~ can I still have a smooch?)
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To: tahiti
But we can't allow one property to derail the whole project

What's large enough for the rich to covet ... is large enough for the poor to defend (Chesterton)

31 posted on 06/17/2005 6:50:50 AM PDT by agere_contra
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To: agere_contra
But we can't allow one property to derail the whole project

"We will have to take some things from you for the common good"

32 posted on 06/17/2005 7:07:06 AM PDT by CaptRon (Pedecaris alive or Raisuli dead)
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To: Personal Responsibility
Alderman Matt Villa, D-11th Ward

Actually it is redundent to pronounce Villa a Dimocrat. The fact that he is a city alderman is enough. The life expectancy of a republican politician in the city of St Louis is approximately 1 nanosecond.

The Villa's have been a controlling interest in St Louis for ages.

33 posted on 06/17/2005 7:15:35 AM PDT by SCALEMAN (Super Cards/Rams Fan)
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To: I still care

"That said, half the time I think these cases are just to squeeze more money out of the shopping center."

As the land owner is right, and morally obligated, to do!


34 posted on 06/17/2005 8:51:30 AM PDT by CSM ( If the government has taken your money, it has fulfilled its Social Security promises. (dufekin))
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Comment #35 Removed by Moderator

Comment #36 Removed by Moderator

To: listenhillary

They might find a horse head on their porch with a note saying, "Move or it will be your head."


37 posted on 06/19/2005 12:33:32 AM PDT by graycamel
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To: Individual Rights in NJ
"so at least I would loose less over there.

Have you loosed your mind?!

38 posted on 06/19/2005 12:35:12 AM PDT by Windsong (FighterPilot)
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