House Bill 3, Eminent Domain, would allow voters to weigh in on an amendment to the state constitution to prohibit the government from seizing private property via eminent domain except for public uses. The amendment also requires that just compensation be provided for all propoerty and in the case of condemnation, establishes the right of property owners to trial by jury.

The bill tightens protections on property rights that were highlighted in the Kelo v. City of London decision from the U.S. Supreme Court, which justified the taking of private property because the general economic benefits generated by private redevelopment were found to be a “public use.” The decision seemed to invite states to make further distinctions, and House Bill 3 does that.

Civitas Action believes the bill helps protects property rights and limits abuses of government, such as seizing property via eminent domain and selling it to private developers.

Civitas Action intends to grade any votes taken on House Bill 3 in the House or the Senate.

Civitas Action is a 501(c)(4) non-profit that educates and informs North Carolinians on policy issues and the actions of their elected officials.