"HB 2006 passed 125-25 in the Texas House and 31-0 in the Texas Senate, but Perry ultimately vetoed it."
June 3, 2008
KWTX- (Channel 10)
A statewide survey of more than a thousand city and county officials shows “overwhelming support” for an eminent domain measure that Gov. Rick Perry vetoed last year at the conclusion of the 2007 session of the Texas Legislature, the Waco-based Texas Farm Bureau said Wednesday.
The Farm Bureau, which supported the reform bill, sponsored the survey.
The results of the five-question survey show that more than 95 percent of the officials who responded “favor changes in the law that address the pillars of eminent domain reform: good faith negotiations with landowners, fairer treatment under the law for everyone involved, and a tightening of definitions under which taking of property might occur,” the Farm Bureau said in a prepared release.
“The results show that a number of local leaders across the state believe it is time for a change when it comes to our eminent domain laws,” said TFB President Kenneth Dierschke.
“We had those reforms in place with HB 2006, and we intend to move ahead with a similar piece of legislation when lawmakers reconvene in Austin in 2009.”
The measure, HB 2006, passed 125-25 in the Texas House and 31-0 in the Texas Senate, but Perry ultimately vetoed it, saying the bill lawmakers sent to him included two amendments that would have provided “a financial windfall for condemnation lawyers at taxpayers’ expense.”
“The state and local government would be over-paying to acquire land through eminent domain in order to enrich a finite number of condemnation lawyers at the expense of Texas taxpayers,” Perry said in his explanation of the veto.
“This bill will slow down and shut down needed construction projects through the creation of a new category of damages that are beyond the pale of reason.”
He said he had received letters from “almost every fast-growth city and county asking him to veto the bill.”
© 2008, Gray Television Group, Inc., www.kwtx.com
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