This is interesting. I wonder if other banks will follow suit.
BB&T Corp. will not lend to commercial developers that plan to build condominiums, shopping malls and other private projects on land taken from private citizens by government entities using eminent domain, the bank holding company said Wednesday.
“The idea that a citizen’s property can be taken by the government solely for private use is extremely misguided, in fact it’s just plain wrong,” said John Allison, BB&T chairman and CEO. “One of the most basic rights of every citizen is to keep what they own. As an institution dedicated to helping our clients achieve economic success and financial security, we won’t help any entity or company that would undermine that mission and threaten the hard-earned American dream of property ownership.” (Story.)
This is a significant development (as it were), because BB&T is one of the nation’s 10 largest banks, and you don’t get to be a huge bank by taking lots of principled stands when rich developers bring their business to you.
It’s encouraging, though. Maybe this is a case where private sector action can serve as a remedy for the excesses of government.