Larry Joiner, Director of the Texas Farm Bureau, Speaks at a Texans for Property Rights Meeting in Lufkin.

Fifteen Texas Organizations launched the Texans for Property Rights coalition with the objective of enhancing landowner protections against condemning authorities. These organizations recognize that Texas’ continued population growth will lead to an increase in the construction of infrastructure required to service these populations. Pursuant to their mission, they will be holding a series of meetings to inform landowners about the condemnation process, and address their concerns regarding eminent domain use. Luke Ellis, an Eminent Domain Partner at Johns Marrs Ellis & Hodge, is a featured speaker at many of these events.

As 95 percent of all land owned in Texas is held privately, many construction projects require the taking of private land, which invariably causes conflict. Though it is possible for builders to acquire the necessary land without eminent domain, purchase negotiations for private property often fail because a willing buyer-willing seller environment is non-existent. In cases where a purchase cannot be made, the builders resort to eminent domain to dispossess the landowner of their property. Often, the projects for which the land is being taken are unsolicited by the landowner, and can damage the property in a manner inconsistent with the land’s current or intended use. All these factors serve to add monetary, emotional, and time costs to such transactions.

The following organizations are coalition members:

Texas Farm Bureau, Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers, Texas Wildlife Association, Texas Forestry Association, South Texans’ Property Rights Association, Texas Poultry Association, Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association, Independent Cattlemen’s Association, Texas Grain Sorghum Association, Plains Cotton Growers, Inc. and Texas Land & Mineral Owners Association.

The Texans for Property Rights website can be found here.