Supreme Court Justice David Souter’s house could be seized to build a hotel, if a property rights advocate whose “phone has been ringing off the hook with people wanting to donate money” to the project gets his way.
Souter, who lives in Weare, New Hampshire, was one of five justices who on June 23 ruled local governments may seize private property and give it to a new owner who will use it for economic development that generates more tax revenue.
Application Process Has Begun
On June 27, Logan Darrow Clements faxed a request to Chip Meany, code enforcement officer of the Town of Weare, seeking to start the application process to build a hotel on the site of Souter’s home at 34 Cilley Hill Road.
Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC in Los Angeles, pointed out Weare will certainly gain greater tax revenue and economic benefits with a hotel on the property than by allowing Souter to own the land. Freestar Media produces shows about government abuse.
“I’m serious,” Clements said. “If and when enough money comes in, I will go forward.”
Clements’ plan is to raise investment capital from pro-liberty investors and draw up architectural plans. Those plans would then be used to raise additional investment capital to complete the project.
‘People Throwing Money’
Within a few hours of issuing a news release announcing his plans to build “The Lost Liberty Hotel” on Souter’s property, “people began calling and throwing money at me,” Clements said. “I think I will have enough money to shepherd this through the process.”
Clements is not a real estate developer, so he said he plans to “bring people on board who know what they’re doing,” including architects, lawyers, and landscapers.
The Lost Liberty Hotel, he said, would feature a “Just Desserts Café” and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon’s Bible, each guest would receive a free copy of Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged.
‘Not a Prank’
“This is not a prank” said Clements. “The Town of Weare has five people on the Board of Selectmen. If three of them vote to use the power of eminent domain to take this land from Mr. Souter, we can begin our hotel development.”
Calls from Budget & Tax News to the Town of Weare were not returned. However, a June 30 article by the Associated Press quoted Laura Buona, chairman of Weare’s Board of Selectmen, as saying, “At this point, the Board of Selectmen are taking no action.”
Meany told the Associated Press, “Am I taking this seriously? But of course. If it is their right to pursue this type of end, then by all means let the process begin.”
Steve Stanek ([email protected]) is managing editor of Budget & Tax News.
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