Implications Of The Supreme Court 'Takings' Decision

Stuart Mack, senior research fellow with the American Planning Association, comments on the implications of the recent Supreme Court ruling in the Tahoe-Sierra Preservation Council Inc. vs. Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) case.

"In Tahoe-Sierra Preservation Council, Inc. vs. Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA), the Supreme Court ruled that two building moratoria were not a 'taking' under the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution for which compensation is due to landowners. The two moratoria totaled 32 months and were imposed by the TRPA until it could complete a new plan regarding the impact of development on the lake's clarity.""At the decision's heart" says Stuart Meck of the American Planning Association, "was the court's recognition that government officials must carefully evaluate the consequences of proposed plans and involve citizens, including landowners, in the deliberations leading up to their adoption." A moratorium's duration, the court ruled, was only one factor in determining whether a taking had occurred. Pressing decision makers to act too hurriedly on land-use plans, the court said, "would only serve to disadvantage those landowners and interest groups who are not as organized or familiar with the planning process." Meck contends the decision also has implications for Ohio, whose state legislature has failed to provide any adequate guidance to local governments on the issue of moratoria. He criticizes the Ohio legislature for its "tragic indifference" to community planning needs in the state.

Thanks to Stuart Meck

Full Story: Planning for the Wise Use of Land Takes Time

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