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Thread: Relocation assistance for displaced small businesses

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Hawkeye66's avatar
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    Relocation assistance for displaced small businesses

    Have you been involved with or do you know of any assistance programs for small businesses displaced by a public works project such as a road re-alignment? We have a couple of small auto shops that will not be getting enough from the condemnation to allow them to re-locate. The State is doing condemnations since its a shared project on a major road that is also a state highway.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Small businesses shouldn't have to pay for their relocation costs as a result of condemnation, per this HUD page on the Uniform Relocation Act.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian ursus's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Gedunker View post
    Small businesses shouldn't have to pay for their relocation costs as a result of condemnation, per this HUD page on the Uniform Relocation Act.
    Is this a problem where the DOT is able to only condemn a portion of their land and not take the entirety? If they are not "displaced" technically but realistically can't or don't want to stay in business there any longer are they screwed? I know that this is an issue at times with our local DOT.
    "...I would never try to tick Hink off. He kinda intimidates me. He's quite butch, you know." - Maister

  4. #4
    Quote Originally posted by ursus View post
    Is this a problem where the DOT is able to only condemn a portion of their land and not take the entirety? If they are not "displaced" technically but realistically can't or don't want to stay in business there any longer are they screwed? I know that this is an issue at times with our local DOT.
    As I understand it, the property is a complete taking. The DOT should be following the URA which would compensate for the taking and for the costs of relocation because the site is a total take. If the site were only being taken to a point where the business could remain, it would not qualify for relocation benefits. The impact on the business would be calculated in the award of damages.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Hawkeye66's avatar
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    Well, DOT has their appraisal done. The guy who owns the business calls me and says that he will go out of business because even if he appeals the appraisal, he is likely to get only so much more out of the compensation commission. He says it would never be enough to cover the move or costs of a building. He got some prices from sellers in similarly zoned areas in other parts of town that were high. I cant figure if DOT is being too low, or if he is just running into a limited amount of options to move. We are going to redevelop the area, but it will be with a design overlay district and a very small portion would be available to that type of business.

  6. #6
    Sometimes DOTs will split the acqusition and relocation tasks between different people. Once the acqusition is complete, the relocation people step in. Ask the business owner to inquiry about his business relocation benefits under the Uniform Relocation Act.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally posted by Hawkeye66 View post
    Well, DOT has their appraisal done. The guy who owns the business calls me and says that he will go out of business because even if he appeals the appraisal, he is likely to get only so much more out of the compensation commission. He says it would never be enough to cover the move or costs of a building. He got some prices from sellers in similarly zoned areas in other parts of town that were high. I cant figure if DOT is being too low, or if he is just running into a limited amount of options to move. We are going to redevelop the area, but it will be with a design overlay district and a very small portion would be available to that type of business.
    As OfficialPlanner posted, the DOT is probably breaking this up into two different pieces: property acquisition, then, relocation benefits. The guy needs to understand a few things: first, re acquisition -- he can appeal the award of damages beyond any "compensation commission" to a court if he feels the price for the real estate and improvements is unjust. He needs to know, though, that the acquisition is ONLY for the real estate and improvements (factoring in the value of the business at that location, of course). Relocation benefits can be quite substantial (which is usually why most with ED power seek to avoid it if possible). He will get help for finding another location (aid and $), moving costs ($$), and other possible cash awards, including possible rent payments if he can't buy anywhere ($$$).

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    I would concur with Gedunker. The DOT is required to identify comparable replacement properties as part of the process. What have they shown?
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