Posts Tagged ‘eminent domain’

Environment roundup

Will Florida takings injustice tempt SCOTUS?

Simone and Lyder Johnson say they

were drawn to Ponce Inlet, Florida, where they bought land and made plans to construct their dream home. Sensing that the town may be able to benefit, Ponce Inlet persuaded the Johnsons to expand their plans into “a delightful mixed-use waterfront development.”

Over several years, the Johnsons bought additional parcels while working hand-in-hand with the town. They were amenable to providing everything the town asked for, like a nature preserve and boat slip. After millions of dollars were spent, the town changed its mind, halted all work, denied permits, and went so far as to pass legislation prohibiting all development on the Johnsons’ property.

Under current regulatory takings law, government is hardly ever required to pay compensation when it forbids the use of land. Is the injustice in this case extreme enough to tempt SCOTUS to revisit the issue? [Ilya Shapiro, Trevor Burrus, and Meggan DeWitt on Cato certiorari brief in Pacetta v. Ponce Inlet]

And a reminder to mark your calendar: Cato’s 17th annual Constitution Day is coming up Monday, September 17. Details and registration here.

Environment roundup

  • “San Francisco Bans Straws, Cocktail Swords” [Christian Britschgi; more (funny memes proliferate)]
  • Sharper distinction between legal treatment of “threatened” and “endangered” species would help species recovery efforts and line up with Congress’s intent [Jonathan Wood, PERC Reports]
  • “It’s really interesting to me that the conversation around vegetarianism and the environment is so strongly centered on an assumption that every place in the world is on the limited land/surplus water plan.” [Sarah Taber Twitter thread]
  • New podcast from Cato’s Libertarianism.org on eminent domain and civil forfeiture, with Tess Terrible and Trevor Burrus. More/background at Cato Daily Podcast;
  • “OMG cellphone cancer coverup” piece in Guardian’s Observer “strewn with rudimentary errors and dubious inferences” [David Robert Grimes; David Gorski, Science-Based Medicine corrects piece by same authors, Mark Hertsgaard and Mark Dowie, that ran in The Nation]
  • Oh, that pro bono: despite talk of donated time, trial lawyers stand to gain 20% of proceeds should Boulder climate suit reach payday [John O’Brien, Legal NewsLine, earlier]

Revisiting Williamson County Regional Planning Commission v. Hamilton Bank

The plight of a Pennsylvania property owner faced with an onerous new ordinance on private graveyards gives the Supreme Court a chance to revisit and revise a 30-year-old decision that requires the targets of takings to go through state court litigation first before suing in federal court for compensation [Ilya Shapiro, Trevor Burrus, and Meggan DeWitt on Cato merits amicus in Knick v. Township of Scott, which follows a cert amicus earlier] More: Ilya Somin.

Supreme Court roundup

  • More on this to come, but Epic Systems, the workplace arbitration decision, is an epic win for contractual freedom and a big loss for the class action bar [earlier here and here]
  • SCOTUS will revisit 1985 Williamson decision, which “makes it very difficult to bring takings cases in federal court.” [Ilya Somin on cert grant in Knick v. Township of Scott, earlier]
  • Gorsuch and Thomas: similar originalist methods, which do not always arrive at similar results [Ilya Shapiro]
  • “Can Agencies Adjudicate Patentability?” Two views of the recent case Oil States Energy Services v. Greene’s Energy Group [Cato “Regulation,” Jonathan Barnett and Jonathan Stroud via Peter Van Doren]
  • “Victory for Defendant Autonomy and the Criminal Jury Trial in McCoy v. Louisiana” [Jay Schweikert]
  • Quantitative analysis of amicus brief success at Supreme Court tells many stories, among them the sterling record of the Cato Institute’s amicus program [Adam Feldman, Empirical SCOTUS]

Environment roundup

Environment roundup

Environment roundup

  • Seattle will ban restaurants from giving plastic straws [Christian Britschgi]
  • Big money in climate inquisition? Lawyers with contingency-fee role in AGs’ carbon campaign join Hagens Berman [Scott Flaherty, American Lawyer; earlier on climate lawyers on contingency fee here and here]
  • Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 2008, includes entries on urban planning by Mark Pennington and on eminent domain and takings by Karol Boudreaux;
  • California legislature’s $1.5 billion green Christmas tree includes bill “aimed at helping a union looking to organize workers who assemble Tesla electric cars in Fremont” [AP]
  • Michigan AG Schuette indicts state human services chief Nick Lyon in Flint water case, and a prominent Democrat and Republican both take exception to that [Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press (former AG Frank Kelley); Maura Corrigan]
  • “You Should Be Able to Vindicate Federal Property Rights in Federal Court” [Ilya Shapiro and Meggan DeWitt, Cato on Wayside Church v. Van Buren County]