MOI raises possibility of more revisions to Land Expropriation Act
By Kathryn Chiu ,The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Cabinet's resistance to changes made to current expropriation regulations softened on Monday as an official revealed that a task force will be formed to hear more grass-root voices as well as assess the requisition process.
August 27, 2013, 12:04 am TWN
In the wake of a series of protests in Dapu and Chunan townships of Miaoli starting in late July, Deputy Interior Minister Lin Tzu-ling (林慈玲) yesterday told United Evening News that she expects the process of land expropriation to be more thorough in the future. Lin made the statement after an internal meeting at the Ministry of the Interior (MOI).
Regarding specific requisition cases, Lin said a task force will be formed to evaluate the expropriation process before coming out with suggestions. She said that other elements of the task force will be empowered to conduct field investigations or hold public hearings to grasp concerns from grass-roots level.
However, the system of zone expropriation should remain unchanged given social justice concerns. But she said the MOI will review those clauses that have sparked controversy.
According to the website of Taipei City's Department of Land, zone expropriation is a statutory process that government follows to obtain certain private land.
After re-planning and re-development only part of the construction land will be given back to the original landowners. The rest will be kept for the use of urban development.
The result is seen as a change of heart for the Cabinet after Dapu land expropriation spurred an array of protests. Some Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers demanded the annulment of the Land Expropriation Act (土地徵收條例).
Lin's statement shows a change of heart of the Cabinet which has refused to make any further changes to the Act after some revisions made in early 2013.
According to an earlier press release from demonstrators, the act amendment did not include the protester's demands such as avoiding expropriation of specific farmlands, establishing a standard evaluation guideline for assessing the public interest of the land expropriation, and allowing more than three real estate experts to evaluate land price before the government offers compensation to the households.