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Supreme Court Ruling Has Implications for Private Landowners
A recent decision by the United States Supreme Court has drawn fire from property rights activists and others concerned about the potential impacts of the ruling on private landowners, including agricultural landowners. On June 23, 2005, in Kelo v. City of New London, the Supreme Court ruled that local governments have the right to seize property under eminent domain for private redevelopment if they pay just compensation to the owners. Historically, eminent domain has been used primarily for public projects, but the ruling concerns conservation groups, who question whether the decision might allow communities to take private agricultural land and open space through eminent domain for development projects.

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