Quote Of The DayFeb. 01, 2010
Today's QOD comes from this morning's meeting of the House Finance Committee. Committee members at first honored Delegate David Englin's (D-45, Alexandria) request to carry over his HB 275 for the year, a polite way of killing it. But the bill would repeal Virginia's Estate Tax exemption, which would amount to a massive tax increase. Seeing its ultimate demise, he used the out that since it is tied to pending federal legislation, it made sense to see the outcome of the Congressional bill first. But then committee Republicans had a change of heart and decided to have the bill only carried over to another meeting, all the better to get committee Democrats on record for or against a tax increase, especially one that specifically hurts families, small businesses and farmers. Commenting on the lengths the GOP members were taking to reverse course on a bill everyone knows is going about as far as a pro-life bill in the Senate, Delegate Albert Pollard (D-99, Lancaster) said:
I believe Delegate Englin only wanted a blind fold and a cigarette today.
Eminent Domain Reform Bill In Sub-Committee Tomorrow Afternoon!Jan. 26, 2010
Okay, here's one that defines strange political bedfellows. The Family Foundation, the Farm Bureau, Tertium Quids and the National Federation of Independent Businesses, are backing a HB 562, patroned by House Democrat Leader Ward Armstrong (D-10, Martinsville). The bill provides just compensation to those who have land rendered useless because of an eminent domain taking. Right now, people are compensated only for the land taken, not additional land that the taking has rendered unusable. The bill is a complement to the landmark 2007 eminent domain reform law which limits government abuse of people's property rights. In other words, condemners want to take the land they need but not pay for all of it. This bill will allow the addition of the unusable land to be factored into the price of the compensation for the eminent domain taking. Very fair. Very needed. (For those who think the 2007 law solved all our problems, see this about the Burkholder's — a Roanoke couple and its small business, via FromOnHigh.)
The bill comes before the House Courts of Justice Civil Sub-committee (click here for members)tomorrow afternoon. Contact the members and ask them to support property rights in Virginia. This bill will go a long way to restoring the rights of farmers, small businesses and home owners who work very hard for their property, only for government agencies to take it, or worse, play games with it with no fair compensation.