A bill has passed the N.C. House and is now in the Senate that would restrict government's power to seize land in North Carolina.
A Supreme Court decision in 2005 on eminent domain said cities can take private land for public use or economic development, which could be office space or a shopping mall.
Henderson County Rep. Chuck McGrady said that was unfair.
He proposed House Bill 8, which allows land seizures for public use only, meaning public roads or buildings, and allows land owners to have a jury decide how much it is worth. It is a change the John Lock Foundation has demanded for years, stating, "The state constitution has the weakest property rights protection in the country."
There is a case happening in Huntersville at Old Statesville and Hambright roads that some say exemplifies the problem.
When the town couldn't reach a deal with a private landowner to expand a road for the project, they took it.
Landowners have hired a lawyer to fight back, arguing the seizure was not for a valid public use because it is a private project.
The bill has passed the North Carolina house and is now in a senate committee.