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One of my colleagues from the Save Ardmore Coalition had her article published on the Castle Coalition's website, which is the branch of The Institute for Justice that fights eminent domain abuse:

When It Comes To Eminent Domain You're Not Alone

By Carla J. Zambelli

Vice President
Save Ardmore Coalition

Eminent Domain for private gain is legal stealing, economic segregation, and more often than not, class warfare. When you receive a notice of a taking, your world turns inside out, not just upside down. At first you feel like you are in the battle completely and utterly alone. But you aren't alone. There are a lot of us out there.

I didn't set out in life to become a grassroots activist on any level, but eminent domain is an issue that, as an American, I found I simply could not ignore. Let me tell you our story in Ardmore, Pa., where eminent domain threatened a block of small businesses in a local historic business district.

Ardmore is in Lower Merion Township, which is situated in Montgomery County, Pa., just minutes outside of Philadelphia. Ardmore is your quintessential old fashioned main street-oriented town. It represents the bygone days of small town America.

One night in February 2004, my fiancé and I headed off to our typical Friday night dinner destination--Hu Nan Restaurant in Ardmore. This was a tradition started by my parents when I was a child. That night we found out that my family tradition for the past 30 years might cease to exist.

When we got to the restaurant and were seated, the proprietors, Dr. E Ni and Betty Foo were unusually subdued, and Betty was sad.

"The township sent me a letter. They want to take my business." Betty said with tears in her voice.

Betty told us about all of the businesses at risk, including Suburban Office Equipment, which has been in business since 1926, and the local VFW Post next door to Hu Nan.

The township had declared the block "blighted," and it intended to acquire these properties in a certified historic district for inclusion in a mixed-use development project to be owned by a private party. Eminent domain abuse was coming to Ardmore.

The rest of the article is here.

And yes, one of the local politicians actually had the gall to call us a "mean spirited group of individuals" for standing up for our rights. The individual was one of the 3 commissioners who, despite being on the Board for over 10 years, was voted out at the last election. :-)
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giza: Giza White Mage (Default)
Douglas Muth

April 2012


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