Ownbey bill could alter eminent domain

Legislative Staff Release

Published 20-Jan-2011

State Rep. Pat Ownbey wants to ensure Oklahomans who lose property due to a city or other authority’s use of eminent domain have the right to buy back any part of the property that goes unused at the original price they were paid.

“Sometimes a city or authority’s plan to use a property acquired through eminent domain falls through,” Ownbey, an Ardmore Republican, said. “In that event, a property owner should have the first right to buy back that property.”

House Bill 1226 would also require the city or authority to send the original owner a notice of this right. The original owner or their heirs would have 90 days to claim that right.

“I have worked diligently on this legislation to balance the rights of property owners with the practical needs of those entities that use eminent domain,” Ownbey said.

“I believe the notice and 90-day period give the original property owner ample time to buy their property back, but will not put an undue burden on the city or authority that has acquired the property.”