The new tool will allow citizens to quickly verify which governmental and non-governmental entities have the authority to exercise eminent domain.
The database was created by Senate Bill 1812, which was authored by Sen. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) during the 2015 legislative session. The legislation instructs the Comptroller of Public Accounts to create and maintain a comprehensive, annually updated public database online to provide basic information on all entities claiming eminent domain authority in Texas.
“Texas property owners are put at a severe disadvantage in the eminent domain process due to a lack of transparency,” said Kolkhorst. “This public database levels the playing field by adding a new layer of transparency to the condemnation process. We are simplifying and increasing public access to the information that landowners need to protect their property rights.” According to the Comptroller of Public Accounts, the database now contains 5,042 entities, including cities, counties, school districts, special purpose districts, pipeline and energy companies, water supply corporations, telecommunications companies and other public and private entities.
“Beyond providing this information to landowners, the database will hopefully shed light on the vast and growing number of entities across Texas, both public and private, who are claiming the right to take a person’s property,” Kolkhorst said.
Eminent Domain Transparency Database website is www.comptroller.texas.gov/webfile/eminent-domain.