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NC House tentatively approve eminent domain amendment again

RALEIGH — The House is poised to once again send the Senate a constitutional amendment to protect property owners’ rights when North Carolina governments take land for projects.

The chamber on Thursday tentatively approved a measure narrowing the scope of eminent domain.

The law would ask voters in 2016 to change the state Constitution so private property condemnation can be done only for a “public use”— like roads, schools and utility lines. The amendment also would require jury trials when requested to determine just compensation for taking such land.

The measure was approved 111-4. A final House vote is expected next week. The House has passed similar measures four times since a U.S. Supreme Court decision opened the door for condemnation for private development projects. But the Senate has not acted.

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