NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


June 8, 2007

A new report released by the Castle Coalition, a grassroots project of the Institute for Justice, shows states' grades in regard to eminent domain laws passed since the Kelo eminent domain case decision allowing eminent domain for private gain.

Among the findings:

  • States that passed the strongest reforms protecting property owners are Florida, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota and South Dakota, each of which received an A or A- grade. 
  • States that received F's were Arkansas, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma and Rhode Island.

"In only two years since Kelo, 41 states have reformed their laws to offer greater protection to small property owners," said Jenifer Zeigler, legislative affairs attorney with the Castle Coalition.  "But much more work remains if homeowners, small business owners, churches and farmers are to be safe from the unholy alliance of tax-hungry governments and land-hungry developers."

According to the reports authors, "Some states have passed model reforms that can serve as an example for others.  Some states enacted nominal reform -- possibly because of haste, oversight or compromise -- and need to know what is left to fix.  And finally, there are those states that have failed to act altogether, leaving home, farm and business owners threatened by Kelo-type takings and beyond."

Source: "2007 Eminent Domain Report Card," Institute for Justice, June 6, 2007.

For report:


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