Just, wow. A few items on the property rights front in recent news.
Recently, the State of Michigan threatened to take away my Driver’s Permission Slip because of a $10 parking ticket. I had parked, overnight, on the street in front of my house. It is illegal to do this on any night, because two days out of the entire year a streetsweeper comes by and cleans the curb-line.
But this story takes the cake. In Milwaukee, a man lost his house to a $50 parking ticket. You can’t fight city hall.
Sure, the guy wantonly neglected to pay the penalty on a minor code infraction. But seriously. If the government can take your house over $50, there is no limit to what it can do. And no amount of reason, apparently, will stop it.
The city foreclosed on the property, and the article says that it cost him his $245,000 house. But the city surely isn’t allowed to profit, are they? I mean, just like a bank can’t sell your house at a Sheriff’s sale and keep proceeds in excess of what you owed on the note, it’s not like the city gets to bank an extra $243k, right?
Says the code enforcer, “If a violation exists, a violation exists. We’re going to enforce a violation.”
And that’s the problem. That’s why you can’t fight city hall.
As long as the zoning board, the city hall, the police departments, are populated by people who’ve never had an original thought, as long as nobody questions whether the penalty is appropriate for the “violation,” as long as they are willing to enforce any code, merely for the sake of enforcing the code, this is the sort of nonsense that happens, and worse. Although it doesn’t get much worse than stealing a man’s house.
Oh well. If you can’t beat them, join them. I guess.
This old lady a few miles from me wants to stall the development of a sports complex because she can see it from her house and doesn’t like the way it looks. She says that none of her neighbors want to see it, either.
Last month she won an injunction against Sail on Investment Co. that temporarily stopped construction. The case is due back in Macomb County Circuit Court on Tuesday.
Of course, none of these people were willing to buy the property, when it was (presumably) listed publicly for sale, in order to preserve their vision of the community. If she has the power to prevent the developer from building something, merely because she doesn’t want to look at it, then it’s at least partially her property.
The developer was required to notify all residents within 300 feet of the new building, they claim that they were never notified, my guess is that the developer is probably allowed to serve this notice in a public forum like a newspaper or other periodical, but maybe he didn’t. Setting aside a lot of the finer points, the real problem appears that some old lady doesn’t like what her neighbor is doing with his property.
I’m inclined to say, “too bad!” At some point, you have to draw the line. Sure, the distribution right now is far from perfect, but that doesn’t (IMO) justify using the State to enforce your desires and beliefs on everyone else.