Kelo vs. City of New London

2221 words 9 pages
Kelo vs. City of New London
Legal Facts: Kelo v. City of New London 545 U.S. 469 (2005) the U.S. Supreme Court answered “yes” to the question of whether or not taking land for the sole purpose of economic improvement would fall into the realm of public use requirement set forth in the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause. The city of New London Connecticut had made economic recovery efforts to sustain a severely downtrodden local economy. Those efforts included a plan to acquire 115 parcels of real estate in order to redevelop an area of commercial, residential and recreational elements. The plan consisted of removing homes to build a new development in order to create jobs, increase tax revenue, and better allow for the city to
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The Kelo majority stressed the relevance of two earlier cases that were closely scrutinized when making a determination on New London’s eminent domain exercise. Those cases included Berman v. Parker; 348 U.S. 26 (1954), and Hawaii Housing Authority v. Midkiff, 467 U.S. 299 (1984).
The Berman v. Parker case was used as both an example and grounds of decision making for several reasons. This case, much opposite of the Kelo case, involved taking properties from both businesses and individuals for public use. Washington D.C used eminent domain to create over 5,000 low-income housing projects, new streets, schools, and new public facilities; all of which was for improved public use. In the case of Kelo, eminent domain was being used along the same lines but rather taking private property from individuals to build structures that would create more jobs, increased tax revenue, and new businesses. Both cases could be argued that they would lead to public benefit.
The Hawaii Housing Authority v. Midkiff case was also used as a similarity to the Kelo case. The courts upheld that Hawaii’s long standing land oligopoly had to be broken up for economic benefit. Hawaii used eminent domain to remove a large amount of land owned by a concentrated group of land owners and redistributed this land to a broader group of private residents.
In both cases, there were large implications of public purposes prevalent and closely parallel to the


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