Chairman Corey Stewart Voices Support for Eminent Domain Amendment
The proposed amendment to the state's constitution would curb the use of eminent domain.
Board of County Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart wants Prince William to throw its support behind a proposed state constitutional amendment that would restrict the government's ability to take private property.
On Nov. 6th, Virginia voters will vote on an amendment that would prohibit the use of eminent domain for the purpose of private gain, economic development, or increasing the number of jobs and tax revenue. Land could only be taken for a public use.
Next week the Board of County Supervisors will vote on a resolution, introduced by Stewart, to formally support the amendment.
"As local official, I am deeply aware of the danger eminent domain presents if not used in its proper role. By voting in favor of this constitutional amendment, Virginia voters will be doing their part in restoring the role of government to its proper scope," Stewart said in a press release.
At Tuesday's Board of County Supervisors meeting, Stewart said that while he thought Prince William had a good record of supporting property rights, the amendment was still pertinent.
"We don't know for certain if future boards will have the same respect for property rights," Stewart said at the meeting.
If the resolution passes, Prince William County will be the largest county in the state to voice formal support for the amendment. No other locality in Northern Virginia has done so.
Text of the ballot question:
Shall Section 11 of Article I (Bill of Rights) of the Constitution of Virginia be amended (i) to require that eminent domain only be exercised where the property taken or damaged is for public use and, except for utilities or the elimination of a public nuisance, not where the primary use is for private gain, private benefit, private enterprise, increasing jobs, increasing tax revenue, or economic development; (ii) to define what is included in just compensation for such taking or damaging of property; and (iii) to prohibit the taking or damaging of more private property than is necessary for the public use?
(Source: State Board of Elections)