The National Park Service has backed off on earlier plans to use eminent domain to get the land in Somerset County for the Flight 93 National Memorial......for now. After meeting with landowners yesterday in Somerset, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said negotiations would continue for a week, but if there is no agreement by then, the government will proceed with using eminent domain to acquire the land. Last month National Park Service officials said negotiations had failed and they planned to use eminent domain. But some landowners said there were never any real negotiations.
Randall Musser, who owns 62 acres near the site where Flight 93 went down as passengers wrestled with terrorists for control of the plane, says Secretary Salazar apologized for the way the government has characterized landowners over the past month..."He said he wants to make it clear that the landowners aren't the villains here, aren't the problem here, and that going forward that's not the way they'll be portrayed."
Salazar says 80% of the land needed for the memorial has been purchased and they want to have it ready for the 10th anniversary of the 9-11 terrorist attacks.