The whims of bureaucracy have a price

Having given some thought to the election results as they relate to the various propositions in Arizona, I've come to some conclusions.

First, Arizonans like their fellow Arizonans to be citizens of the U.S.

Second, there is nothing more sacred to the American way of life than private property. Just don't let anyone smoke there, and if you're using the property to raise pigs, make sure they are provided with after-dinner mints.

The first observation is self-explanatory as it regards illegal immigrants. The second regards the resounding support state voters gave to curbing government powers of eminent domain, as well as their desire to impose on many of the same property owners they are protecting rules that those owners may not like.

I like curbs on eminent domain, since I believe government shouldn't seize property unless it's for a legitimate government purpose, such as widening a highway. Seizures designed to ultimately increase tax revenue by giving the property to another party should be abhorrent to pretty much everyone.

I voted against all those smoking-related propositions, as well as the "humane" animal treatment measure. If treatment was inhumane, it's already against the law, I figured. And it's none of my business if someone in business wants to allow customers to smoke.

With curbs on eminent domain now ratified by the voters, we can turn our attention to what I like to refer to as "pre-eminent domain" as practiced by the city of Kingman.

Celebrate Homes would very much like to put up a 128-square-foot sign at Airway and Andy Devine to direct motorists to the 114-lot development. The city Planning and Zoning Commission would very much like Bubba Grimes, the Celebrate Homes developer, to not do so, and is going to recommend denial to the City Council. Please note, if you will, that putting up the sign at that location would not violate any existing rules. I found it somewhat humorous that the zoners were more than happy to offer Grimes advice on how to spend his advertising money. Grimes is out there trying to make a buck, and there's no guarantee he'll be successful. Zoning staffers, meanwhile, can continue to draw paychecks and tell people, "sorry, it's not against the rules, but we don't like clutter."

The victim of the "pre-eminent domain," though, is the owner of the land where Grimes wanted to place his sign. For all we know, the owner bought the land specifically so someone would pay to put a sign on it.

So if the City Council decides to nix the sign which would not violate any regulations, I fully expect Council's next order of business to be deciding how much to reimburse the landowner every month for not being allowed to rent some of his property for the sign.

And they can pay for it out of the P&Z budget.

The whims of the bureaucracy have a price, and for that reason the bureaucracy ought to pay it.