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Repression of Private-Property Rights

May 21, 1987

Your article "10-Screen Theater Plan Draws Criticism" (Glendale section, May 14) focuses too much on Rev. J. Whitcomb Brougher Jr.'s opposition to "dirty films" and not enough on the main issue: the theft of private property by Glendale's Community Redevelopment Agency.

The agency forces people to sell their property at prices set by the agency, and then resells the land to favored developers. The article notes that property owners have a "choice": renovate their own buildings according to a master plan, or sell them to the city, which would contract with a developer to complete the job. What kind of choice is this? What about allowing property owners to keep their buildings and decide for themselves what to do with them? Is any legitimate purpose served by seizing this land, except for enrichment of developers, enhancement of the Glendale City Council's political power, and providing jobs for "urban planners," who would be unemployed in a free-market society? The merchants who object to being run out of town by the Community Redevelopment Agency are up against massive government power. These veteran business people are right to challenge Glendale's ongoing repression of private-property rights, and I wish them the best of luck.

TED BROWN

LOS ANGELES

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