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Three Inherent Empowerments of the Government - Term Paper Example

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This essay presents three inherent empowerments the government is vested with the public as absolutely necessary to carry out its public duties.  these competencies are police authority, taxation proxy, and the power of eminent domain. This paper discusses the latter in the US state of Texas…
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Three Inherent Empowerments of the Government
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Download file to see previous pages In earlier times, any sovereign ruler or government body was not mandated or required to pay the owner/s of private land; all the ruler had to do was declare such land as belonging to the state and to be used for public purposes without any need to compensate such seizures. This action was viewed as authoritarian and unjust by whoever owned private land that was unlucky enough to be considered for eventual public use and created resentment against the ruler who expropriated the said private land/s without payment. Legal experts believe it was sometime around 1730 that the concept of just compensation came into existence in order to avoid this situation that was considered as just a plain seizure without any justifiable cause whatsoever despite a claim of the lands to be used for the greater benefit of the public.
Legal realities conflicted with the politics of absolute property rights hence the modern concept of eminent domain came into being around the time of English feudal laws (Schultz 24) but eminent domain has one important difference with the power of taxation in that the exercise of the power of eminent domain requires consent from the private land owners. The power of eminent domain recognizes the state as having a “natural right” to control the lands over which it has jurisdiction for “higher purposes” or the said greater public benefit. The right is considered inherent and does not require any explanation or specification.
On the federal level, it is the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution which grants the government (at the federal, state, and local levels) to take private property for public welfare uses such as for safety and health reasons. This power is exercised for purposes of compulsory acquisition of private property through a legal process known as condemnation proceedings but the private owners are also entitled to due process of law and at the same time covered by the protections of the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Both of the amendments form part of the Bill of Rights; the Fifth requires just compensation in eminent domain expropriations while the Fourteenth provides due process and equal protection. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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