9/02/2006

Township reversal on eminent domain was right thing to do: Pottstown PA Mercury, 8/28/06

Editorial

The Earl Township [PA] supervisors have changed their minds, and the Tiki Bar will be remaining in its popular spot along the Manatawny Creek.

The supervisors met last week in a special session to squash the eminent domain proceedings which had been initiated against Jim Finegan to take his restaurant usiness as part of a "hazard mitigation" project in the Manatawny flood plain.

Eminent domain proceedings were brought against nine properties that lie in a flood plain along the Manatawny Creek earlier this year, with the decision to move on the Tiki Bar and one other property reaffirmed at the Aug. 14 meeting.

Township officials would not comment on their decision to squash the eminent domain proceedings.

The plan to acquire the properties through eminent domain is being replaced with a plan to approach property owners with offers to buy the properties, and if the owners don’t want to sell, eminent domain will be withdrawn.

While some property owners may be happy to sell their land to the township through eminent domain, Finegan’s issue was that you can’t put a price on his livelihood.

He was right. The township has made the proper decisionin reversing its move to take the business.

Finegan perhaps said it best:

"It’s the way the world really should work; if they want to buy properties, they should come to the owners and make an offer.

"To use eminent domain to force people to sell is wrong. I’m thankful they came to their senses."


Pottstown PA Mercury: http://www.pottstownmercury.com