Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation
Agricultural News and Information
Greg Gibson, Coordinator
Public Relations / Multimedia
1-800-227-8244 ext. 4154
Farm Bureau launches Eminent Domain Reform petition drive
JACKSON – After several attempts to get an eminent domain reform
bill passed in the legislature, the Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation
(MFBF) is now taking the issue to the people of Mississippi.
“For three years, Farm Bureau has urged legislators to protect
homeowners and landowners from confiscation of their private property
by eminent domain, but to no avail,” said MFBF President David Waide.
“The 2009 Legislature passed H.B. 803, which prohibited the taking
of private property under the guise of economic development for private
development or business. Both House and Senate passed the bill, but the
Governor vetoed it.”
Now, Farm Bureau has launched a petition drive to put this initiative
on the November 2011 ballot. If this initiative passes, it will greatly
discourage government entities from taking private property for economic
development purposes by prohibiting its use for those purposes for ten
Waide urges citizens to sign the petition. “Anyone can go to a
county Farm Bureau office and sign the petition or go to the SavingMyLand
Web site (www.savingmyland.org), print out a petition and sign it,”
he said. “There is also a petition in the latest edition of Mississippi
Farm Country magazine.”
In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court held in a 5-4 decision in Kelo v. City
of New London that a Connecticut city could take away people’s homes
and turn the property over to a private party to develop the property
for its own profit. The Court justified this result because the increased
tax revenue on the developed property would benefit the public and the
use of the property was, therefore, a public use.
Farm Bureau and many others disagree with this decision. “Just
because a big company or a developer has the wealth to build a hotel or
office building on the property that will generate more revenue does not
justify the government’s taking the property from the owner and
turning it over to a wealthier party,” Waide said. “Constitutional
rights should not be determined by financial standards, or favor the wealthy
For more information about this initiative or to sign the petition, visit
your county Farm Bureau office, go to www.savingmyland.org, or sign the
petition in the March edition of Mississippi Farm Country.
Farm Bureau Federation is the state's largest general farm
organization with more than 204,000 member-families statewide. There
are Farm Bureaus in all 82 counties in Mississippi
where agriculture comprises a fundamental part of
Mississippi 's economy.
Headquartered in Jackson
, the federation is an independent, non-profit agricultural
organization and is not associated with any arm of the government.
For more information about Farm Bureau, visit our website at www.msfb.com.