Eminent domain for snow fences?
by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
January 30, 2010
There is a bill before the Wyoming Legislature that would greatly expand the eminent domain power of the Wyoming Department of Transportation. House Bill 30 would allow the Wyoming Highway Commission to acquire private property via eminent domain for erecting snow fences.
The bill, sponsored by the Joint Transportation, Highways and Military Affairs Interim Committee, proposes a change "expanding authority relating to acquiring property for rights-of-way for structures to maintain safe roadways."
Although existing statute limits the commissionís power to acquire property by eminent domain to certain circumstances, this bill would add a provision allowing one more exception, which reads "unless acquired for the erection and preservation of structures reasonably necessary to maintain the safe condition of a highway."
The legislation would become effective immediately upon passage of the legislation.
The Wyoming Legislature convenes the next session on Feb. 8, 2010.