At a public hearing held on June 1st, River Hospital officials were up in arms because the amicable discussions of easements for the Riverwalk Project had suddenly changed to a hostile tone of eminent domain. At the time of the hearing, the only clear explanation was the process of eminent domain as described by village attorney M. Gebo and R.K. Hite's Environmental Management Consultant Nancy Mullen. R.K. Hite is in charge of appraising and negotiating compensation for owners of properties that the Riverwalk will traverse.
Those in attendance left the hearing without any clear understanding of the shift from easements to eminent domain. During public concerns at the June 12th village board meeting, I took the opportunity to ask for an explanation. Village attorney M. Gebo explained why the process of eminent domain is needed for the Riverwalk project and can be listened to in the clip below.
I thought it was a simple and reasonable explanation. I just wonder why it was not given at the June 1st public hearing. It would have eased the tension.
Riverwalk Easement Turns Hostile
Audio from the Village Board Meeting 6.12.12