Why doesn't the City just take the property by eminent domain?

Eminent domain or the governmental taking of private property for a public purpose is also an involved legal process which requires that the property being taken must be taken for a public purpose. An eminent domain process would at minimum likely take one year before the City would in fact own the land. Even if the process could be used, it would also require that the City pay the property owner the appraised value for the land at the time of the taking. That means that in addition to the cost of having to clean up the site, the City would have to come up with the market value for the land to pay the non-compliant owner who does not clean up his own property. This of course assumes that the City has the money budgeted to pay for such a piece of land, which it normally would not have. Under the state statute (RSA 155-B) that the City typically uses for cleaning up properties, the City at least does not have to compensate the irresponsible property owner for the value of his/her remaining property.