Kelo sparking citizen outrage

The Supreme Court’s decision this past week has made “eminent domain” the topic of conversation everywhere – from the grocery store check-out lines to dinner tables and dentist offices. In some states citizens are demanding new state legislation to protect their homes and property.
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Catching Up

If you missed them, here are some news articles, pictures of Sue’s Bluff walk, and a video of the canoe race in the harbor.

Just this past week or two, there were articles and letters to the editor about the riverfront in the Commercial Appeal and Daily News that you’ll want to read. They are posted in the library. To get there, click on Library in the menu bar above, or use the following links:
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The legal issues

The main news story for Thursday June 23, 2005 was the U. S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision in the Kelo case holding that a governmental body can use eminent domain to take a private citizen’s home and turn it over to business interests under the guise of economic development.

As sad as that news is, the Kelo decision does not affect the citizens of Memphis with respect to the Riverfront Development Corporation’s plan to commercially develop the Public Promenade. That issue has already been decided by the TN Supreme Court. In 1965 the court held that the city only has an easement to the property and cannot transfer any interest in it to a private developer. [1] Furthermore, in 1867 -100 years earlier - the court held that the Promenade could not be condemned.[2]
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A Visionary Speaks

Charleston, SC Mayor Joe Riley to Speak in Memphis

Mark your calendar: September 21

Mayor RileyWidely considered one of the most visionary and highly effective governmental leaders in America, Joe Riley has served as Mayor of Charleston, S. C. for 30 years. Under his leadership, Charleston has focused on the beauty of its city and the quality of life for every resident. With unerring attention to detail, Riley has steered Charleston to become one of the most livable cities in America and the second most visited.
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Neighborfest in Overton Park

click to enlargeDon Richardson, Heathie Colvett, and Sue Williams were among the “friends” at Neighborfest Sat. June 4th in Overton Park.

Friends for Our Riverfront has members available to speak to neighborhood and community groups about plans for the future of the riverfront. Please contact us at info@friendsforourriverfront or by phone at 496-0736 if you are interested in arranging a program.

June 7th Council to Vote on Budget & Tax Increase

The City’s financial situation does not look good. Just last week, Moody’s lowered the City’s bond rating citing the City’s increasing debt, and still the City does not seem to have the ability to tighten its belt and stop planning big projects that it can’t afford.

On June 7 the City Council will vote on one resolution and, for the third and final time, on two ordinances that set the budget and determine if and how much property taxes go up.
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