The House gave tentative approval to HB8 which would let voters decide on a constitutional amendment to allow the government to take private property only for “public use.” The amendment would eliminate any use of the words “public benefit.” Bill sponsor Republican Representative Paul Stam said those words have been used in the past to take private property only to turn it over to a private developer.
Democrats Mickey Michaux and Deborah Ross claimed the proposed amendment may still create legal probblems. Michaux said he wasn’t sure it completely prohibited condemning a minority community as a blighted area and selling it to a developer for a profit.
Despite those arguments the House passed the bill by an 89-28 vote. It faces one more vote before being sent to the Senate.