Saturday, July 16, 2005

Playing both ends against the middle

As we suspected, State Rep. Dennis Bonnen sided with the powers-that-be at Freeport City Hall in the eminent domain legislation that's now before our august Legislature.

Bonnen says it would be wrong to make curbs on eminent domain retroactive, claiming that could raise constitutional issues, so as it stands now Freeport's taking of waterfront land owned by two seafood companies to build a yacht marina can proceed.

(We're not sure it would have to be retroactive since, so far as we know, title to the Freeport property hasn't changed hands yet, but that's a legal issue that neither we, nor Bonnen, is qualified to argue, seeing's how we're not shyster lawyers.)

Being the cagey legislator he is, Bonnen still can wrap himself in the red-white-and-blue bunting of private property rights by supporting limits on the future use of eminent domain.

Bonnen cited the same private property rights song and dance when he blocked a proposal to put landowners engaged in rock quarry operations under certain environmental restrictions. (See The Brazosport News, Feb. 7, 2005.)

Anyway, it sounds like the eminent domain battle is turning into a huge cluster you-know-what with exemptions being carved out for convenience stores and a certain football stadium in North Texas.

You can almost hear the clashing and clanging of ideas and ideals way down here.

[Der Faxenspiegel]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Since he has so few original ones of his own, here is an idea for Bonnen: Pass legislation that is the benefit of his constituents, and let the judiciary figure out the constitutional issues.

enormous iNCoNgrUiTieS