Cameron County non-profit could take land from Boca Chica homeowners

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Cameron County non-profit could take land from Boca Chica homeowners.PNG

Cameron County non-profit could take land from Boca Chica homeowners (Source: KGBT)

SpaceX is closer and closer to launching their Starship rocket to Mars from Boca Chica Beach, but the path out of this world is forcing some people out of their dream homes.

While many homeowners tell CBS 4 that no money from Elon Musk will make up for it, the only option homeowners have at this point is to take Space X’s offer, which is three times the property value.

If not, the Cameron County Spaceport Development Corporation could take the land through an eminent domain.

“We would have the authority to acquire these properties if necessary. But that’s my personal belief, we’ve never discussed it as a board,” said Chairman of the Cameron County Spaceport Development Corporation, Nick Serafy Jr.

According to Serafy, an eminent domain can be applied if an agreement is not met by both the homeowners of Boca Chica Village and SpaceX.

“That’s the mechanism for government authority to get control of somebody’s property,” said Serafy. “That’s the same thing used when highways are expanded or railroads are built.”

But homeowners would still be paid for their property, but it would not be three times the appraisal value.

“It’s generally the appraisal value,” said Serafy. “So, the SpaceX offer is much more attractive than what I understand an eminent domain offer would be.”

It’s an upsetting decision for Elida Garcia, who currently lives near Austin, but said her home in Boca Chica Village has always been a getaway destination for her family.

“My husband said we’re having to give up our dream, so that Elon Musk can pursue his,” said Garcia.

Even Garcia’s sister, Margarita Hernandez, also owns property in Boca Chica, but is worried that SpaceX’s offer isn’t enough to buy a home similar to what they already have.

“No, not enough to buy a house near the beach,” said Hernandez.

For both sisters, they said Boca Chica Village is irreplaceable.

“We’ll be down there in Brownsville, talk to our neighbors, see what everyone else is doing,” said Garcia. “But I sure don’t want to give up my home.”

Garcia and Hernandez said appraisers were at their homes Monday and adds that this time they actually went into their homes and took photos.

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk was recently at the SpaceX Boca Chica Facility to give an update on the Starship vehicle. 

Cameron County officials have also weighed in on the plans that SpaceX has for their facility

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