The San Pablo Redevelopment Agency in California has just announced their intentions to reauthorize their power of eminent domain for another twelve years. They argue that property owners should not be concerned because the city has no intention of using eminent domain—it is only an “important tool” to be used as a “last resort.” But if they have no intention of using this “important tool,” then why do they want it?
San Pablo also says that homeowners are protected by Proposition 99. That is misleading. Proposition 99 only protects homeowners who have lived in their homes for more than one year and whose homes have not been declared “blighted.” As the term “blight” in California is very broad, homes can be labeled “blighted” simply because officials want to replace the existing homes with something more glamorous.
San Pablo residents are absolutely right to be concerned about the city’s proposal. A majority of homes and businesses in San Pablo could be on the chopping block if the city gets their way.
Read the full story here.