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Property and Consumer Law

Case Summary
Kelo V. City of New London, Connecticut
FACTS: New London, Connecticut, was declining economically. The city's unemployment rate was double that of the state generally, and the population at its lowest point in 75 years. In response, state and local officials targeted a section of the city called Fort Trumbull for revitalization. Located on the Thames River, Fort Trumbull comprised 115 privately owned properties and 32 additional acres of an abandoned naval facility. The development plan included one section for a waterfront conference hotel and stores; a second one for 80 private residence; and one for research facilities.

The state bought most of the properties from willing sellers. However, nine owners of 15 properties refused to sell, and they filed suit. The owners claimed that the city was trying to take land for private use, not public, in violation of the Takings Clause. The case reached the United States Supreme Court.

REQUIRED: Do you agree that the city did not violate the takings clause?

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In Kelo V. City of New London, Connecticut private property was seized by the city and turned over to developers to develop housing, research facilities, and a convention center. None of these establishments was identified as a place designated for 'public use'. Therefore, the city did violate the takings clause. I would disagree that the city did not violate the takings clause.

Supreme Court Justice Scalia argued ...

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The expert examines property and consumer laws.