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Opinion: Annexations, Liberty and Private Property Rights
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13 July 2018   Jim Lamerson

Councilman Jim Lamerson talks about his responsibility as an elected official and constitutional liberty.

Sitting in my studio I watch the clouded sky – streaks of light peek through the clouds as I sit staring out my window patiently awaiting the start of the monsoon. As morning rolls in I contemplate my freedom of choice. Being an American, my freedom to make choices has been defended by millions of soldiers, sailors, and airmen since Revolutionary times. In fact, hundreds of thousands have paid the ultimate price for the freedom so many Americans take for granted but reap the benefits of. I make choices daily affecting my life on a personal level. As an elected official, I make decisions that affect many others, sometimes financially, culturally, or personally. 

As we approach new annexation possibilities in Prescott, I have the civil and legal responsibilities to fully understand city responsibility and the constitutional liberty assured to private property owners, citizens and residents alike. The cause and effect consequences of City Council decisions during these annexations will be measurable for many years. As an elected official in the United States by affirmation via my oath of office, I am pledged to protect and defend those private property rights. 

All private property owners have certain property rights, responsibility, and culpability. A community has the responsibility, through its leadership, to work with private property owners wanting to develop their property and the effected community to rationally mitigate the cause and effect consequences of the proposed development.