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Supreme Court Sides with State on Jasper Port Site

Charleston, SC - The Supreme Court today affirmed the South Carolina State Ports Authority's superior eminent domain powers and affirmed the Authority's supervisory responsibilities over port facilities in the state.

“We appreciate the Court's consideration,” said Bill H. Stern, chairman of the Authority. “With their decision in hand, we're moving forward with steps to acquire the site.”

The Court's opinion acknowledges Jasper has the ability to build a terminal, but only if the Authority does not pursue the site.

“The Supreme Court made it clear that the Authority gets the first shot at the land,” said Stern.

Chairman Stern sent a letter to the property owner, the Georgia Department of Transportation, this afternoon.

We're ratcheting up the discussions,” Stern said. “Without a site, there's no terminal. The Authority's superior condemnation powers will ensure we have a site.”

Citing its statewide economic development mission, the Authority Board voted unanimously to acquire the property in January 2005.

Link to opinion