A CT state senator wants to ban the Connecticut Department of Transportation’s ability to use its power of eminent domain to seize “intangible property,” such as bus companies’ licenses to carry passengers on specified routes.  CT Sen. Joe Markley, introduced a bill “to limit the state’s power of eminent domain to the taking of tangible real property” – and to “specify that such power does not extend to the taking of licenses or permits.”  “This radical expansion of eminent domain threatens every business person and property-holder in Connecticut,” Markley said.

The bill is a reaction to the DOT’s recent taking of four private bus companies’ long-standing licenses to carry passengers over certain routes.

DOT Commissioner James P. Redeker stated has said that the condemnation of the bus companies’ certificates is a continuation of a DOT effort dating back five years to put the companies’ commuter routes out to competitive bidding. He said such bidding wasn’t done decades ago when the companies obtained their certificates under a noncompetitive state regulatory system that he called “ancient.”