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House votes to slow eminent domain use for some property

House votes to slow eminent domain use for some property

Dustin Hurst
March 26, 2015
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March 26, 2015

The Idaho House voted Thursday to protect some property from eminent domain land grabs by the government.

The measure, sponsored by House Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, would require an independent assessment of potentially blighted property before a government could take it for economic development purposes.

The measure would also give property owners up to 90 days to clean up or repair any problems identified in the independent assessment.

“It just gives the land owner one little tidbit of opportunity to correct the problem,” Moyle said on the floor Thursday.

Rep. Pete Nielsen, R-Mountain Home, worried the 90-day window was insufficient, but Moyle said that was the best he could do.

“We settled on a negotiated number of 90,” the majority leader replied to Nielsen’s questioning.

Six House Democrats, including Minority Leader John Rusche of Lewiston, Phylis King of Boise and Elaine Smith of Pocatello, served as the only dissenting votes on the plan.

The measure now heads to the Idaho Senate.

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