Lowball Watch


       APP.com reports that a jury in Asbury Park, New Jersey, awarded $2,024,000 to owners of beachfront property taken by eminent domain, on the redevelopment agency’s offer of $500,000. The jury evidently accepted the the owners’ appraisal report based on five comparable sales. For the full story see Nancy Shields, Ruling in Eminent Domain Case Favors Asbury Park Property Owner, July 27, 2009



          The lawyer for the successful owners is quoted as saying that this was the third local verdict in which juries rejected the redevelopment agency’s evidence and came in with much higher verdicts. He explained that the city’s appraisal was low because it was based on the condition of the subject property that had been caused by precondemnation blight created over time after the agency designated the subject area for redevelopment in 1984. The agency evidently argued that without its redevelopment project there would have been no residential development on its oceanfront areas. The agency is expected to appeal.