eminent domain

Area 51 Land Grab — Air Force Threatens To Use Eminent Domain To Seize Land [Watch]

Area 51 land grab by the United States government has once again raised questions about what exactly goes on at the Nevada U.S. Air Force installation. A massive bombing range surrounds the “not on any map” Area 51 property.

Landowners of the Area 51 nearby property in an extremely remote area of Nevada have reportedly been offered $5.2 million for the acreage. The owners have been given until Thursday to accept the “last best offer” or be subject to the federal government seizing their land via eminent domain, Fox News reports. Air Force officials reportedly cited “national security issues” to initiate eminent domain proceedings.

Nuclear testing in the Area 51 region began in 1951. The property owners who have so far turned down the $5.2 million offer trace their descendant back to a couple who lost their mining business after the U.S. Air Force moved into the area during the 1940s. The mining business owned by the descendants of the property owners “mysteriously exploded” in 1954. The then owners fought the government to seek reparations until they ran out of money to keep the court case going in 1959.

Joseph Sheahan and his cousin, Barbara Sheahan Manning, are fighting to keep the land along with the 20 other co-owners of the family land. They relatives feel the Area 51 region property symbolized the blood, sweat, and tears of the grandparents and great grandparents.

“They have completely disregarded our constitutional rights,” Manning said.

“What they really want to buy is our property, our access rights and our view,” Joseph Sheahan, 54, said. “We prefer to keep our property, but it’s for sale under the right price at the right conditions. Why don’t they ask themselves what it cost my family over the years in blood, sweat, tears and money?”

Groom Mine reportedly overlooks Groom Lake and has been owned by the Sheahan family since Ulysses S. Grant was president. The site is reportedly so secret that Nellis Air Force Base Commander Colonel Thomas Dempsey would only reference its location as “one of many remote locations within the Nevada Test and Training Range.”

Both sides of the Area 51 land battle are currently far apart on price. The family believes that a lengthy court case would ultimately lead to a fair market value determination of the land, Yahoo News reports.

Over the past six decades, the federal government has accrued the bulk of the land surrounding the mining property, which totals around 400 acres. The land, which is located northwest of Las Vegas, is now only reachable by passing through armed security gates. Security is intense around the 4,500 square mile military training and nuclear testing site.

“The land has become an increasingly greater safety and security risk as demand for test and training opportunities have increased,” a government release pertaining to the push to get the Area 51 neighboring property said.

Air Force Deputy Assistant Secretary for Installations Jennifer Miller also has not referred to the mining property as being located next to Area 51.

“Nothing you can look up in any Air Force naming convention refers to Area 51,” Miller stated.

The Sheahan family maintains that they have always been good neighbors and are patriotic Americans with generations of relatives who proudly served and were decorated for their military prowess.

Manning also stated that her father, Daniel “Bob” Sheahan and his brother, H. Patrick Sheahan, sent a letter to the Air Force in May, 1986, which placed the value of the property at $13.6 million.

What do you think about the Area 51 property battle and the use of eminent domain by the federal government?

[Image via Shutterstock]

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