Wednesday, June 21, 2017 at 11:05AM
Clark Hill

President Trump declared an “Infrastructure Week” but did not accompany it with specific actions to increase infrastructure expenditures.

President Trump campaigned on promises to increase infrastructure spending.  If this comes in the form of repairs to existing roads, bridges, airports, waterways, and utilities, then it will have little impact on property owners in terms of new takings. However, if it comes in the form of new projects, then property owners will be impacted significantly.

Until the Gordie Howe Bridge project commenced, Michigan had not seen the type of significant new public projects that create mass condemnations in some time.  Historically, the Michigan Department of Transportation went from major project to project just in Metropolitan Detroit that lasted for decades.  Completing 696 in southern Oakland County merged into the Hall Road project in Macomb County and was followed by M-5 in western Oakland County. When those projects ended, the Stadia project in Detroit started. Most of the condemnation in recent years has been initiated by utility companies. 

Earlier this month, President Trump held “Infrastructure Week.”  On June 6, 2017, the White House Blog announced that “President Donald J. Trump has dedicated this week to addressing America's crumbling infrastructure. The President will be announcing his Administration’s infrastructure plans this week on Air Traffic Control, addressing the inland waterway system, and improving project efficiency.”

As far as I can tell, no executive orders were issued or legislation introduced either as a part of Infrastructure Week or immediately following it. The President did announce formation of a “new council” that was actually created by Congress in 2015.  This article details the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council. 

If you have any questions about the eminent domain process, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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