Conn. Considers Plan to Let People Buy Back Land

Fri May 08, 2009 - Northeast Edition

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Connecticut lawmakers are debating whether to let former landowners repurchase property that the state bought or took by eminent domain for highway projects, but now doesn’t need.

A bill pending before the Senate sets up a negotiating procedure in cases where the state determines it no longer needs the property — either because the project has changed or been canceled — and the former owner wants it back.

Opponents say the practice would limit the state’s construction options for the unfinished projects and set a poor precedent.

The bill was prompted by requests from people along Route 6 in eastern Connecticut, where a highway expansion proposal has changed and stalled several times since the 1960s.

Some people there are still renting their former properties from the state.