HOUSE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE

 

 

January 31, 2005   Hearing Room 50

1:30 PM   Tapes  9 - 10

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. Bill Garrard, Chair

Rep. Gordon Anderson, Vice-Chair

Rep. Mitch Greenlick, Vice-Chair

Rep. Robert Ackerman

Rep. Mary Nolan

Rep. Patti Smith

Rep. Mac Sumner

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  Sam Litke, Committee Administrator

Lindsay Luckey, Committee Assistant

 

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD & WITNESSES: 

                                                HB 2268 - Public Hearing

                                                     Wendy Johnson,  Oregon Law Commission

                                                     Greg Mowe, Oregon Law Commission

HB 2355 - Public Hearing

     Rep. Chuck Burley

     Joe Willis, Attorney at Schwabe Williams

     Albert Depenbrock, Department of Justice

     Greg Mowe, Oregon Law Commission

     Wendy Johnson, Oregon Law Commission 

 

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 9, A

002

Chair Garrard

Calls the meeting to order at 1:33 PM.

022

Chair Garrard

Opens public hearing on HB 2268.  Discusses the 2 bills to be heard, noting their similarities and the possibility of combining the 2 bills.  Notes the difference between the relating clauses as a consideration.

HB 2268 – PUBLIC HEARING

036

Sam Litke

Committee Administrator.  Summarizes the content of HB 2268. 

052

Wendy Johnson

Deputy Director, Oregon Law Commission.  Explains the background and functioning of the Commission.  Describes HB 2268 as a consensus bill recommended by the Law Commission.  Introduces Commissioner Greg Mowe who chaired the Commission and defers to him to discuss the details.

078

Greg Mowe

Commissioner, Oregon Law Commission.  Notes his background in eminent domain cases.  Explains the significance of HB 2268 and describes the process one must go through.  Asserts that most instances are settled out of court and there are incentives for condemner and condemnee to do so.

114

Mowe

Explains importance of appraisal documents exchanged.  Mentions results of State v. Stallcup (2004).  Relays advantageous elements of HB 2268 to all parties involved. 

133

Rep. Ackerman

References Section 8 and inquires about the consistency of naming the author in both written and unwritten reports.

145

Mowe

Explains his assumption that the person giving a report would be identified.  Declares his acceptance of amended language if that point were in question.

153

Rep. Greenlick

Asks if the witness is familiar with the other bill being proposed.

156

Chair Garrard

States his interest in having the witnesses stay for the hearing on HB 2355 with the possibility of combining the two bills. 

160

Johnson

Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT A)

170

Chair Garrard

Closes public hearing on HB 2268 and opens public hearing on HB 2355. 

HB 2355 – PUBLIC HEARING

170

Rep. Chuck Burley

Representing HD 54 and sponsor of HB 2355.  Gives overview of HB 2355.  Introduces Joe Willis and mentions Edward Fitch, who requested the bill.

185

Joe Willis

Attorney, Schwabe Williams.  Submits proposed amendments (EXHIBIT B).  Gives background of his law practice on eminent domain cases.  Has been working on amended language.

210

Willis

Gives his interpretation of the intent of Ed Fitch.  Describes the perspective of the process from a “landowner’s lawyer point of view”.  Describes expenses incurred. 

249

Chair Garrard

Clarifies that the property owner has no choice whether or not to sell  but only at what price.

252

Willis

Notes the difference in condemnation sales and extra expenses incurred.  Continues explanation of process.  Asserts that there is not enough language “to control what happens after the initial appraisal.”  References (EXHIBIT B).

280

Rep. Ackerman

Expresses concern with the lack of clarity in the amended language because it does not reference the final draft of the bill.

291

Sam Litke

Administrator.  Explains that Mr. Willis’ amended language corresponds to the LC Draft, not the printed bill.

302

Willis

Expresses willingness to provide Committee with corrected proposed changes.  Has interest in continuing explanation focusing on concepts.  Would like to include a time limit for appraisal amendments. 

320

Chair Garrard

Questions how many times the government could make a counter offer to the landowner during the specified amount of time.

325

Willis

Responds that the government can make offers at any time.

340

Chair Garrard

Asks that Mr. Willis come back with prepared amendments.

346

Willis

Responds that he will send proposed amendments in writing and says he will briefly summarize content of changes:

  • Create a timeline for process.
  • “Stop both sides from making dramatic changes in theory on their appraisals”.

359

Rep. Greenlick

Suggests that what Willis is describing is taken care of in Section 9.

360

Willis

Agrees but clarifies issues he has with the bill as printed:

  • No explicit timeline.
  • Does not have appropriate limits on what amended or revised appraisals can do.

387

Willis

Introduces another concept helping landowner’s decide if they should go to trial or not.  Notes a final provision he’d like to include.

437

Willis

Wants to comment on concerns on HB 2268.

445

Chair Garrard

Expresses desire to focus on HB 2355.

TAPE 9, A

036

Rep. Ackerman

Asks if he’s suggesting changes to the proposed amendment (Section 9) or if he supports the bill as printed.

038

Willis

Responds that there would be changes to the language of Section 9.

042

Rep. Ackerman

Asks if there would be a time limit included.

044

Willis

Responds that there would be a 10-day before trial limit.

045

Rep. Ackerman

Asks how he plans to define “substantial change” in the proposed legislation.

046

Willis

Answers that he identified things that should not be included.

053

Chair Garrard

Questions if they would be opposed to combining bills.

057

Rep. Burley and Willis

Both respond they have no opposition.

070

Albert C. Depenbrock

Assistant Attorney General, Department of Justice.  Submits written testimony against HB 2355 (EXHIBIT C).

085

Depenbrock

Discusses Department of Transportation as principal agency which makes use of eminent domain.  Notes statistics on small percentage of cases that were filed as condemnation cases.

105

Depenbrock

Believes that process has been improved by exchange of appraisals amongst parties involved and notes that most cases settle.

110

Depenbrock

Believes that the language of HB 2355 takes away the discretion a judge may have had in the past.  Takes issue with the ability to make changes without the trial judge which he believes loosens the requirements of the parties to adequately disclose what they have.

117

Depenbrock

Recommends  HB 2355 does not pass, and recommends HB 2268 does pass.

130

Greg Mowe

Commissioner, Oregon Law Commission.  Notes that his comments are focused on the procedures and he would like to reconvene the work group, look at the proposed changes by Mr. Willis, and discuss HB 2355.

148

Mowe

Defers to Wendy Johnson on the issue of which bill goes forward.

152

Wendy Johnson

Deputy Director, Oregon Law Commission.  Discusses unique position of the Law Commission.  Submits that they try to present consensus bills. Expresses complications to the Law Commission if the bills are combined.

171

Rep. Greenlick

Notes that HB 2268 seems non-controversial.  Wonders about the possibility of passing the bill and then if necessary an amendment later in the session.  Barring no problems, he recommends passing HB 2268 and making other changes later if necessary.

185

Chair Garrard

Expresses desire to reconvene work group and use HB 2268 as primary bill.  Asks the witnesses if they would be open to that suggestion.

192

Mowe

Responds affirmatively and asks about time.

195

Chair Garrard

Asks if 30 days would be sufficient.

199

Mowe

Responds affirmatively.

219

Rep. Nolan

Agrees that the work group should reconvene but expresses her hope that if the group is not able to reach consensus, the bills could be considered individually.

216

Chair Garrard

Agrees that the Committee will bring back HB 2268 and asks Rep. Burley and Willis to return to the stand.

219

Chair Garrard

Asks if Rep. Burley and Willis would be open to participating in the work group. 

224

Rep Burley and Joe Willis

Both concur.

226

Chair Garrard

Asks for a report back in 30 days from the work group on HB 2268. 

230.

Chair Garrard

Closes public hearing on HB 2355.

235

Chair Garrard

Discusses the upcoming meeting with Lane Shetterly, DLCD, in which he will discuss the State’s direction to the counties in dealing with Measure 37 (2004) claims.  Distributes a copy of letters from DLCD to counties.  Elaborates on the concerns in dealing with Measure 37 and the future actions of the Committee. 

330

Chair Garrard

Adjourns the meeting at 2:23 PM.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

 

  1. HB 2268, written testimony, Wendy J. Johnson, 5 pp.
  2. HB 2355, proposed amendments, Joe Willis, 2 pp.
  3. HB 2355, written testimony, Albert Depenbrock, 1 p.