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C.A.R. Supports ”Yes” Vote to Protect Homeowners from Unjust Eminent Domain Takings

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RISMEDIA, May 15, 2008-Imagine someone from your city or community knocking on the door of your home and telling you to move because they have found someone else who will contribute more in taxes than you do. Sound far-fetched? Not if you’re one of the thousands of people throughout California currently living under the very real threat of being kicked out of their homes by local governments to make room for more expensive stores and homes. To prevent this egregious use of eminent domain, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) announced its support of Proposition 98 on the June 4 ballot. Prop. 98 will impose an outright ban on the use of eminent domain to take any private property – including homes, business and farms – for another private use.”Proposition 98 on the June ballot will restore fundamental property rights by prohibiting governments from using eminent domain to take private property for another private use,” said C.A.R. President William E. Brown.

“Cash-strapped local governments have resorted to abusing the concept of eminent domain to make land grabs they hope will bring in more tax revenue,” he said. “What once was a legitimate means for governments to invest in public infrastructure like roads, schools and parks is now a hammer used to destroy the rights of homeowners.

“While nobody may be knocking on your door today, a “Yes” vote on Prop. 98 will ensure you aren’t the next victim tomorrow,” Brown said. “We are urging all to vote “Yes” on Prop. 98 on June 4.”

C.A.R. also has taken an “Against” position on Proposition 99, which, if passed, would cancel the provisions protecting homeowners in Proposition 98.

Proposition 98:

- Limits Eminent Domain to Public Use – Proposition 98 limits the use of eminent domain to public use projects, such as freeways, schools, or parks.
- Prohibits Price Controls on Private Property – Proposition 98 prohibits government from imposing rent control or inclusionary zoning ordinances on private property. As units are vacated, price controls will be “lifted.”
- Furthermore, Proposition 98 will prohibit future land use restrictions that act as a “taking” for the benefit of another private interest.
- Limits Government Taking for Similar Use – Proposition 98 prohibits government from taking private property to be used for the same purpose, such as taking property with residential housing to be used for government housing.
- Limits Government Seizures to Exploit Natural Resources – Proposition 98 will protect family farms and open space from seizures of their land by government in order to take the property’s natural resources.
- Provides Full Compensation – Proposition 98 is the only measure that requires full compensation to business owners, even when the property is seized for public projects. Owners will be entitled to compensation for temporary business losses, relocation expenses, business reestablishment cost, and other reasonable expenses.

For more information, visit www.car.org.

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