|UCPR Mission Statement
The mission of United Citizens for Property Rights is to provide a greater voice for property owners and property rights in Iowa. We advocate public policies that protect and defend private property rights from further erosion. Through education we want to unite citizens in the support of the rights of all land owners to ensure property rights are preserved and that the American dream is passed on to our children and grand-children.
Our Founding Fathers Believed:
In the years after achieving independence, the Founders ensured that the property rights for which they fought were protected by our Constitution. They recognized that liberty and property rights are inseparable.
James Madison stated, "It is sufficiently obvious, that persons and property are the two great subjects on which Governments are to act; and that the rights of persons, and the rights of property, are the objects, for the protection of which Government was instituted."
"The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God ... anarchy and tyranny commence. PROPERTY MUST BE SACRED OR LIBERTY CANNOT EXIST"
"Nothing is ours which another may deprive us of." —Thomas Jefferson
The need to protect private property rights, once so obvious to Madison, Adams, and Jefferson is now becoming lost in a tangle of intrusive government takings. During the past few decades, we have witnessed an unprecedented erosion of the basic rights of property owners in America.
The right to own property and to keep the rewards of individual labor opened the floodgates of progress for the benefit of the entire human race. Millions have fled other countries to participate in the American dream. But now excessive government regulation restricts the economic potential, creative and constructive use of property, impedes the ability of property owners to respond to free market demands, and ultimately, impedes the ability of average Americans to realize the American dream.
Inherent in the U.S. Constitution and Iowa Constitution is the power of eminent domain, which allows the government to take private property for a “public use” and requires the payment of just compensation for the taking ... But the definition of "public use" has gradually expanded over time. Originally constrained to projects like roads, bridges and public buildings, local governments are increasingly willing to use the power of eminent domain to achieve all sorts of public policy goals, and eminent domain has become a primary tool for promoting urban development.
“Just compensation” must include the full costs of any seizure by eminent domain which may be far greater than appraised value. It should include the cost to purchase comparable property, relocation expenses, legal fees, and compensation for the disruption of family life or business operations. One citizen should not be ‘sacrificed’.
Many people in Iowa and many throughout the United States would rather not involve themselves in politics. The reality is that politics involves itself with us whether we like it or not. We can bury our heads in the sand and hope things don't get too bad, or we can fight back when government treats us as its servant rather than its master. We must speak out!
Based on data provided by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), "almost three-in-ten acres in the United States are owned by the federal government". Another 20% is owned by state, local, and quasi-governmental agencies.
They want more! We believe private property owners are the best stewards of the land and offer the greatest protection for our future generations.
We believe that when the rights of any one land owner is in peril, the rights of all landowners are placed in jeopardy. To more effectively defend our individual rights, citizens must unite and increase the volume of our collective voice.