St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

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laMaine
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!
Dan Billings
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Steven Scharf"] I suspect in Dan's situation, it may have increased value somewhat over the long run.[/quote]

No. The farm house and the barn sat right near the north bound lane is now.

I also think the road noise from the highway has a negative impact on the remaining land.

There is also not an exit on this road so we do not get what would be the positive benefit of easy access to the Interstate.

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Her property doesn't reach 131. Commercial Street and Water Street reach 131.
I actually took a couple of pics of the place (stalker 101 8) ).
There are houses behind her house but there is nothing next to. There is a big chunk of land, a corner lot, adjacent to her property that I assume she owns but no matter how you stretch it when it is a length of 161 feet it ends up in her front yard.
What would be awful is if she lost the property then was reassessed at a higher rate because of the improvements to her road. Nightmare.

Robert
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

I take it that her house is the long one across the street from the ocean? If so, why not take the 13 ft. from the parcel across the street? Why take any? I would speculate the town wants to make improvements so the empty spaces can be developed.

Robert
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Who owns the ballfield?

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Robert, I think the reason they are not looking into the parcel across the street is because of mandatory waterfront setbacks.

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

I'm pretty sure its the towns ball field.
I know little league practice is held there occasionally.

Robert
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

H Hunt, ever think there is a bigger picture in someones mind? Maybe selling the ballfield and developing the area. Widening the road would be the first step? The ballfield would make a mighty fine condo project. :idea:

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

:shock:
I never would have thought of that. Now that you mention it we do have a newer ball field w/better parking, drainage and seating. Then if the town could force her out of that monster of a house (she is from away so her rights are negligible :wink: ) that would free up a lot of land. Do you really think the power's that be on this wee little peninsula are that manipulative?
I prefer to think not but you have planted a very uncomfortable seed in the back of my mind.

Robert
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Condos with a waterfront view. Well to do retirees who wouldn't burden the school system with children. Hmm, think it ever crossed some minds? :idea:

ewv
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="H. Hunt"]When property is taken through eminent domain is the house reassessed and are taxes lowered accordingly?[/quote]
Of course not. The assessment is based essentially on house and lot size and whether or not it on the water. Minor variations are sometimes made for "heavy traffic".

Thank you for the description. The more we hear about this the worse it is revealed to be. It's abusive.

JIMV
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Smells of theiving...again.

JIMV
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Dan Billings"]When did it become wrong for the government to take property for roads -- as long as it pays market value?[/quote]

I don't know. Is this road really used all that much or is this simply a nice to do job that the city desires?

JIMV
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Dan Billings"]If the legislative body appropriates the money, the property owner is properly compensated for lost value, and the property is to be used for a public purpose then the town's actions are legal and constitutional.

[/quote]

Just not ethical or moral

JIMV
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Michelle Anderson"][quote="Dan Billings"]Without Eminent Domain every property owner in the route could hold up the government for unreasonable amounts or just say no.[/quote]

And who gets to determine what is reasonable and what is unreasonable?[/quote]

In this case the people stealing the land, the government.

Another thing that folk sort of forget is that, even if the price for the property taken is 'fair market' the reduction in value of the remaining property is discounted entirely...In Dan's example, his grandparents land was now bisected by an interstate. Getting from the south 40 to the north 40 might now take an hours drive on a tractor and the remaining chunks of land are worth far less than the big contiguous chunk had been worth.

JIMV
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="laMaine"]An [url=http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=water+street+st+george+maine&ie=UTF8... view[/url] of the street.[/quote]

Good heavens, there is no reason for this other than government power.

KathyP
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Why bother widening? I'd just make it a one-way road and be done.

JIMV
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[quote="H. Hunt"]:shock:
I never would have thought of that. Now that you mention it we do have a newer ball field w/better parking, drainage and seating. Then if the town could force her out of that monster of a house (she is from away so her rights are negligible :wink: ) that would free up a lot of land. Do you really think the power's that be on this wee little peninsula are that manipulative?
I prefer to think not but you have planted a very uncomfortable seed in the back of my mind.[/quote]

See if they play with the sewers when they redo the road and you will have the answer.

H. Hunt
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KathyP, how dare you use logic when there is tax money to be spent?
The St. George Peninsula has 3 Fire Depts.
2 of the 3 have been rebuilt in the last 5-10 years. Of course T. Harbor utilized this opportunity to build an addition on to the town office.
St George as part of the SAD 50 school district (Cushing, Thomaston, St. George) pays 55% of SAD 50s budget w/the other two towns shouldering the remaining 45%.
The town is always looking to purchase swathes of land to restrain growth and provide access to the river and waterfront. 2 years ago the town purchased a piece of property leading to Ft. Point for 250k (if my memory serves my properly) just recently the town was looking at a 100 acre lot of water front property for 2.1 million dollars. :shock:
Nobody but nobody seems to understand that when these lands are lifted out of private ownership and become town land [b]it is our tax dollars purchasing the land. It is our taxes that will go up as a result of this loss of revenue.[/b]
The other disturbing aspect of all this is most people are too busy or too bored by town politics to even look into the issues.
Nobody cares until they're knocking on the door w/three bulldozers backing them up.
My three best girlfriends, all 30 something's, w/kids, and property owners have no interest in local or national politics. They just make their decisions thru 30 second sound bytes and open their check books when the tax bill arrives.
When I try to discuss taxes, politics or the town w/them the expression I inevitably get is :roll: .

leftout
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="H. Hunt"]
The other disturbing aspect of all this is most people are too busy or too bored by town politics to even look into the issues.
[/quote]

a common truth

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Mrs. Scott is being reimbursed 19,500 for the taking of property.
The widening of the road will occur primarily on the water side not on the lot on which the house sits. The reason for the widening is all town roads must meet certain width regulations. This road is frequently used as a turnaround for people launching and hauling out boats and floats. It is a town road and the building prior to becoming a private residence was a sail loft. The town is responsible for its maintenance (plowing, salting, sanding). As for Mrs. Scott she has blocked the road w/vehicles on a number of occasions to give the impression that it was a driveway and not intended for public use.
As for the ball field that was given to the town by Mrs. Scott's family with the stipulation that it be used for the kids of St. George once the ball field is no longer being used ownership of the field reverts back to Mrs. Scott. Additionally she has made repeated complaints about the usage of the ball field IE-noise, parking, clean-up. From what I was told she would prefer the field shut down so she can reclaim ownership.
I spoke to one of our former Selectmen (actually a woman) and boy I got an earful.
The town has an obligation to maintain the road.
My thought was why doesn't the town offer to sell the road back to her,
keep the turnaround point and she could privatize the rest?
A happy compromise.

Dan Billings
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

HH: Thanks for looking into the situation. While I think there are other options, as you suggest, your post makes clear that the Town has no evil intent.

ewv
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Dan Billings"]HH: Thanks for looking into the situation. While I think there are other options, as you suggest, your post makes clear that the Town has no evil intent.[/quote]
The "intent" for taking Dan's family's farm was less evil than this. What they actually did in both cases is evil. You don't trample someone's rights in the name of "improvement" and then claim it's ok because there is no "evil intent". The ends do not justify the means whether or not the ends are dubious.

Dan Billings
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Eminent Domain is reognized by the U.S. Constitution.

ewv
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

[quote="Dan Billings"]Eminent Domain is reognized by the U.S. Constitution.[/quote]
I don't think anyone is unaware of that or needs to be reminded of it, especially after the recent infamous Kelo decision. We are not constrained in critical analysis and moral evaluation by what is entrenched in law, and certainly not when a legalized abuse is perpetually expanded well beyond what anyone originally thought the government would grow into -- which suggests to thoughtful people that a more fundamental analysis is required.

Thomas O
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

What is a 13 X 161 strip worth to anyone but the town? No one else could actually do anything with such a parcel.
What is fair market on someting like that and who decides what that amount is?
Will they pay her that fraction percentage of the total value of her property? Will the value of structures be included in the mix?
My guess is that they will work 'resale value' of the property minus the house into some formula that keeps said compensation to a minimum.
But I'm just a working stiff.
Anyone know how this works?

Dan Billings
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[quote="ewv"]I don't think anyone is unaware of that or needs to be reminded of it, especially after the recent infamous Kelo decision.[/quote]

This has nothing to do with Kelo. This is a taking for a public road -- something our founders recognized could and would happen.

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

Tom O. (if I may be so informal :wink: )
What I know is the town is offering 19,500 for the strip of land.
I did not ask how they reached this number but I'm sure I could find out in the next day or two.
I will reiterate it is a town road not a driveway and the town does have requirements regarding width and accessibility on publicly owned roads. These requirements are set by the state government.

Dan Billings
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[quote="H. Hunt"]These requirements are set by the state government.[/quote]

That's not true.

H. Hunt
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St. George Eminent Domain Halted for New Hearing!

I thought that was what she said today, but I am willing to follow up. Maybe it's town regulation.
I am always willing to admit when I am wrong and I won't edit the posts that contain my errors. :wink:
As a resident of this town I have been following this topic w/some interest. I am a staunch advocate for property owners rights but the more I hear (locally) the less sympathetic I am towards Mrs. Scott. I initially thought it was a piece higher up on Water St. I always thought that portion of Front St. was a private drive no one looking at it would think it was a town road. Mrs. Scott has lined the both sides of the road w/granite blocks which the town has repeatedly asked her to remove, she has blocked the road w/vehicles and made it inaccessible to locals and tourists alike. Maybe the town felt this was their last option to insure accessibility.
The more I hear the more it sounds like a shoving match with neither side willing to compromise.
As I said in an earlier post I always vote against the use of eminent domain but at this meeting Monday I may be swayed.

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