Blog for Highland Park

Welcome to the Blog for Highland Park, a weblog chronicling events in Highland Park, NJ from an alternative perspective to the often one-sided slant of the official borough newsletter.

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Location: Highland Park, New Jersey, United States

I am a freelance writer and community activist who has worked on many progressive and Democratic political campaigns over the last 25 plus years and a lifelong resident of Highland Park, NJ. I have a BA in Journalism from Rutgers University, an MA in Middle East Studies from Harvard University, and an MEd in English Education from Rutgers Graduate School of Education. An enthusiastic amateur astronomer, I have just completed Swinburne University Astronomy Online's Graduate Certificate of Science in astronomy and am pursuing a Masters of Science in astronomy at Swinburne. I am also an actress with experience in theatre and film and have written a full length play. I am currently working full time on a book "The Little Planet That Would Not Die: Pluto's Story."

Monday, January 26, 2009

Meet Susette Kelo in New York this Wednesday

This message is from the Institute for Justice, which has been in the forefront of the fight against eminent domain abuse for years. Susette Kelo, whose case resulted in the infamous Kelo vs. New London Supreme Court decision permitting the use of eminent domain for redevelopment, will be holding a book forum with author Jeff Benedict, who documents her story in Little Pink House: A True Story of Courage and Defiance.

"Susette Kelo is the person behind the infamous U.S. Supreme Court eminent domain case, Kelo v. City of New London. Susette’s little pink house—along with the homes of her neighbors—were taken from them as a result of that 2005 decision. New London promised to put a glitzy new private development project on her land, but now, nearly four years after the ruling and $78 million in taxpayer money spent, literally nothing has been built on the land; it remains vacant, the neighborhood bulldozed.

Susette and author Jeff Benedict will hold a book forum at Columbia University on Jeff's new book, Little Pink House: A True Story of Defiance and Courage. The book is available for purchase from Amazon here: Be sure to check out the Wall Street Journal's review of this terrific book in its January 26, 2009 edition here:
The review is titled 'Evicted but not without A Fight: The Government Took Her Home. The Supreme Court Approved.'"

Book Forum
Hosted by the Federalist Society
Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009
4:30pm - 6pm
Columbia University School of Law
William & June Warren Hall
Amsterdam Avenue & W. 115th Street
(Entrance on Amsterdam Avenue between 115th & 116th)
Room L107 (on lower level)
New York, NY

While the specter of redevelopment has significantly diminished here in Highland Park, due to citizen action against eminent domain abuse and the subsequent recession, make no mistake: we have no legal protections for businesses or properties if local government ever decides to resurrect redevelopment. In spite of many Assembly and State Senate proposals, no law has been passed in NJ to protect property owners from eminent domain abuse.

The fight against eminent domain abuse for redevelopment is far from over. This is a golden opportunity to hear from someone on the front lines of this struggle.