Q. By Federal law, is the Transit Agency required to get two appraisals regarding real estate acquisition?
A. Federal law and regulations do not require two appraisals. FTA requires one appraisal and an independent review of that appraisal.
Q. By Federal Law, does the Transit Agency have to show the Property Owner both appraisals?
A. There is no Federal requirement to make an Agency's appraisal available to a property owner. This is controlled by State law or Agency preference.
Q. By Federal Law, does the Transit Agency have to offer the higher of the two bids?
A. The term "bids" is not clear. If you mean "appraisals,” there is no such requirement.
Q. Is it against Federal Law for a Transit Agency to pay one Property Owner substantially more for similar property than to a property owner literally across street? If so, I'd like to read the regulations.
A. The offer made to a property owner may not be less than the approved appraisal. There can be differences in valuation based on that approved appraisal. See §24.102.
(Posted: December, 2011)
Q. We need additional rights from a property owner where there is already a voluntary P&U in place for offer. Do we need to: 1. rescind 1st offer and remake entirely new offer? 2. send revised offer letter for additional rights only? Key question in my mind - is the voluntary P&U in place for first offer impacted by asking for additional rights?
A. Concerning whether a new purchase (price) offer needs to be submitted to the property owner when you need "additional rights" after an initial offer has already been made:
The applicable Federal rules that might address your situation are found in the regulations issued under the federal Uniform Assistance and Real Property Relocation Act, 49 CFR Part 24. Under the Uniform Act, you must offer "just compensation" (i.e., fair market value supported by an appraisal and review appraisal) to the property owner. Also, pursuant to 49 CFR Section 24.102(h), if there is any "material" change in either the character or condition of the property, a new appraisal must be conducted and a new offer of "just compensation" must be made.
In your case, if the "additional rights" are a material change to the property or property rights sought to be acquired, a new appraisal (and review appraisal) must be conducted and a new offer made to the property owner. (Posted: January, 2012)
Q. My question has to do with locating bus shelters on City r-o-w and private property or just private property. Our Legal Division recommended entering into a private agreement versus requesting an easement to locate the bus shelter on property not owned by the City of Galesburg. A bus shelter will only be located on private property if the owner enters into an agreement with the City donating the use of the land for a bus shelter and concrete area. The grant will pay for the construction of the bus shelter and concrete area. Are you aware of any Federal regulations regarding locating a bus shelter on private property that need to be followed i.e. does the Uniform Relocation Act pertain to donated use of property or is there any other type of federal regulation that needs to be followed?
A. You should contact your regional FTA office for assistance with this question. (Posted: August, 2013)