Not what the Founders envisioned!

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by dontoe, Aug 18, 2005.

  1. dontoe

    dontoe 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

    May 7, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Hickory, N.C.


    My Nomination For Slime Of The Year…
    Joshua Holland (8:31PM) link

    I know it's early yet, and some institution could turn out to be slimier when everything shakes out, but right now I'm going with the city of New London and the New London Development Corp.

    They're the semi-public company that pushed the case of Kelo V. New London, and now have thrown United States citizens from their homes for a private development.

    The only thing that can be said for Kelo is that it brings folks on the right and the left together for a rare moment of shared outrage.

    But that's not what earns New London the Slime of The Year nomination. This is from the Fairfield County Weekly (via MaxSpeaks via Atrios):

    The U.S. Supreme Court recently found that the city's original seizure of private property was constitutional under the principal of eminent domain, and now New London is claiming that the affected homeowners were living on city land for the duration of the lawsuit and owe back rent. It's a new definition of chutzpah: Confiscate land and charge back rent for the years the owners fought confiscation.

    In some cases, their debt could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    The hard rains started falling that year, when Matt Dery and his neighbors in Fort Trumbull learned that the city planned to replace their homes with a hotel, a conference center, offices and upscale housing that would complement the adjoining Pfizer Inc. research facility.

    Wait, it gets worse:

    The New London Development Corp... is offering residents the market rate as it was in 2000, as state law requires. That rate pales in comparison to what the units are now worth, owing largely to the relentless housing bubble that has yet to burst.

    "I can't replace what I have in this market for three times [the 2000 assessment]," says [Matt] Dery, 48…

    In June 2004, NLDC sent the seven affected residents a letter indicating that after the completion of the case, the city would expect to receive retroactive "use and occupancy" payments (also known as "rent") from the residents.

    In the letter, lawyers argued that because the takeover took place in 2000, the residents had been living on city property for nearly five years, and would therefore owe rent for the duration of their stay at the close of the trial. Any money made from tenants--some residents' only form of income--would also have to be paid to the city.

    [NLDC's lawyers] warned that "this problem will only get worse with the passage of time," and that the city was prepared to sue for the money if need be.

    An NLDC estimate assessed Dery for $6,100 per month since the takeover, a debt of more than $300K. One of his neighbors, case namesake Susette Kelo, who owns a single-family house with her husband, learned she would owe in the ballpark of 57 grand. "I'd leave here broke," says Kelo. "I wouldn't have a home or any money to get one. I could probably get a large-size refrigerator box and live under the bridge."

    What complete bastards. Let 'em know what you think, Max Speaks has contact info.

  2. Fubeca

    Fubeca 1/2 ton status

    Dec 18, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Denver Area
    I honestly don't know how I would react - but I know it wouldn't be pretty.

    I'll be interested to see if this goes to court or if its just a scare tactic.

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