The Supreme Court announced a decision this week that cities can seize an individual's home or business for economic development, such as shopping malls or other private businesses which could have negative consequences for land owners. With urban sprawl approaching in many areas of agricultural production, what is to stop cities and other local and state government bodies from utilizing this new authority to seize land held by retailers or farmers? The case, Kelo vs. City of New London (Connecticut), concerned homeowners that refused to sell to make way for a new commercial project.

The city argued that since the new development provided economic growth in the form of higher local tax revenues it was a valid "public use" and fell under their eminent domain authority. The U.S. Supreme Court decided 5-to-4 in favor of seizing individual property.

Dealer & Applicator magazine