Virginia Senate passes eminent domain amendment

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - An amendment to Virginia's Constitution that would make it harder for governments to take private land has cleared the Virginia Senate.

The Republican-backed measure passed on a 23-17 vote Monday.

Three Democrats joined their GOP colleagues in supporting the resolution to put the amendment on the ballot for voter approval in November.

An identical resolution is pending in the House of Delegates, where it is expected to pass.

Supporters of the amendment say it protects individual property rights. Opponents say it will make the costs of public projects more expensive for state and particularly local governments.