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Critical Resources and Land Development: "Water Wars" Are on the Horizon

As we've posited in this space before, water will be the oil of the 21st century. In what way? Its value, its scarcity, its requirement for development. It will also be more valuable than oil in that, unlike oil, we have...more

2/26/2015 - Drinking Water Groundwater Water Water Supplies

N.C. Court of Appeals Applies Common Law Rule Against Perpetuities to Invalidate Lessee's Preemptive Right

Ask almost any lawyer or law student to name the most esoteric concept addressed in law school, and you're more likely than not to hear "The Rule Against Perpetuities". The Rule Against Perpetuities, or the RAP, exists at...more

2/20/2015 - Commercial Leases Commercial Tenants Landlords Perpetual Trusts Right of FIrst Refusal Rule Against Perpetuities Tenants

N.C. Court of Appeals Addresses "Offset" Defense In Loan Deficiency Claims, the Ownership Element of Trespass

The Court of Appeals issued a number of decisions today, while snow and ice ghosted the City of Raleigh. The Court addressed trespass to land, the availability of the "offset" defense to commercial loan guarantors. Let's...more

2/18/2015 - Appeals Commercial Loans Encroachments Guarantors Trespass

Appellate Court Addresses Judicial Discretion As to Record on Appeal from Quasi-Judicial Decision

Last week, the North Carolina Court of Appeals addressed some unique issues with respect to the trial court record in an appeal of a quasi-judicial proceeding....more

2/11/2015 - Appeals Cell Towers Evidence Property Owners Supplemental Evidence Trial Court Orders

Fresh Bill In Newly-Convened N.C. State Legislature Aims At Condemnation Powers

Portending what is likely to be a significant legislative session for local government powers and real property rights in North Carolina, the first "substantial" bill introduced in the 2015-2016 session of the North Carolina...more

1/16/2015 - Condemnation Pending Legislation Private Property Rights Property Owners

Raleigh Updates Public on the Citywide Zoning Re-Mapping Process

We've blogged in the past about the City of Raleigh's massive zoning re-mapping process, which is meant to migrate all properties in the City's land use jurisdiction into the reach of the new Unified Development Ordinance. ...more

12/24/2014 - Local Ordinance Urban Planning & Development

Raleigh "Splits" Department of Planning and Development Into Two New Departments

The City of Raleigh, growing at a seemingly undeniable pace, is aiming to "get ahead" of the governance challenges such growth portends by splitting the City's Department of Planning and Development into two separate...more

12/23/2014 - Construction Industry Municipalities Urban Planning & Development

N.C. Court of Appeals: Statutory "Custodian" of Public Records Is "In Charge of" the Relevant Office

Former Durham District Attorney Tracey Cline was removed from office by Court order in the first half of 2012. The story behind her efforts to return to the office has been detailed at great length by the local Raleigh and...more

12/17/2014 - Public Officials Public Records

N.C. Court of Appeals: Limitations Period Does Not Apply to Local Government Enforcement of Subdivision Performance Bonds

A post-Great Recession treat, the North Carolina Court of Appeals affirmed today a ruling that the Town of Black Mountain is entitled to enforce subdivision performance bonds originally in the name of Buncombe County, after...more

12/17/2014 - Bonds Municipal Bonds Performance Bonds Statute of Limitations Subdivision

N.C. Court of Appeals: Restrictive Covenant Prohibiting "Store" Does Not Prohibit "Parking" for a Prohibited Store

How broadly will the appellate courts interpret a restrictive covenant applicable to real property? Not so broadly as to prohibit a parking lot to be used by customers for an otherwise expressly prohibited use....more

12/17/2014 - CVS Parking Lots Pharmacies Real Estate Development Restrictive Covenants

N.C. Appellate Court Discusses Service of Process By "Posting" and Due Diligence Enabling "Posting"

The North Carolina Court of Appeals issued a fractured ruling today on the manner of service and the interpretation of North Carolina Rule of Procedure 4(j1). The case is In re Powell, No. COA14-498 (December 2, 2014)....more

12/2/2014 - Appeals Foreclosure Service of Process

Asheville, North Carolina Looks At Short-Term Rentals and Zoning, Fees

Thanks to the internet, is this a golden age of direct-to-consumer, everyday necessities like living quarters -- think AirBnB or Couchsurfing -- to transportation -- think Uber and Lyft? Is laundry next? What about eating? ...more

11/25/2014 - AirBnB Tourists Vacation Homes

N.C. Appellate Court Speaks On Attorney Fee Recovery Law Applicable to Local Governments

In 2011, the North Carolina General Assembly enacted the following statute allowing payment of attorney fees in the face of certain local government acts...more

11/20/2014 - Abuse of Discretion Attorney's Fees Municipalities New Legislation

N.C. Court of Appeals Construes Zoning Provision Excluding All "Unidentified" Uses

Today, the North Carolina Court of Appeals issued a decision giving legal operation to the common, catchall zoning ordinance provision stating that “[u]ses not specifically listed in the Table of Permitted Uses are...more

11/19/2014 - Land-Use Permits Local Ordinance Permits

Commercial Landlord Citing Lease Terms to Prevent Stores from Closing on Thanksgiving Day

It's rare that an ordinary commercial lease term can make national news, at least indirectly. Some higher-profile stores are bucking the Holiday trend this year and refusing to open on Thanksgiving day. Costco, Lowe's...more

11/12/2014 - Commercial Leases Landlords Retailers Tenants

Dominion Resources Sending "Final" Requests for Permission to Survey Land for 550-Mile Pipeline

We've blogged in the past about the efforts of Dominion Resources, Inc. to construct a natural gas pipeline from West Virginia, through Virginia, leading to southern North Carolina. We've also blogged about the anticipated...more

11/12/2014 - Dominion Resources Natural Gas Oil & Gas Pipelines Property Owners

The 'Rents: NCDOT Is Looking to Charge Rents, While Residential Tenants Are Denied Class Certification to Collect Rent Deposits

We've been quiet these past few weeks but the world has not been. We'd like to talk today about two entirely unrelated but fascinatingly fun topics: (1) the North Carolina Department of Transportation's ("NCDOT") idea to...more

11/5/2014 - Class Action Highways Infrastructure Rent Rental Property Security Deposits Students

Nevada and D.C. Courts Give Priority of Position to HOA Assessment "Superliens" Over First Mortgages

Mortgage lenders beware. - In late August, the D.C. Court of Appeals rendered a decision in Chase Plaza Condominium Association, Inc. v. J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., CA-5826-10 (August 28, 2014) determining that a...more

10/16/2014

Asheville City Hall's Celebratory "Rainbow Flag" Challenged on Basis of Local Government Powers

All are presumed to know about the recent activity around the legal issue -- not the human issue, the legal issue -- of same-sex marriage. In Asheville, in response to the coming legal change, the City Council earlier...more

10/13/2014 - Local Governance

Raleigh and Wake County Websites Recognized Among Best, Nationwide

As any good business knows, a good website is critical. A good website provides an impression, serves at a repository for information, functions as a means of communication and works as a vehicle for a transaction, among...more

10/10/2014 - Government Entities Municipalities Websites

Land Use By Another Name?: Local Governments Seek to Tax Softdrinks By Ballot Measure

Our regular readers will know that this blog is as much about land use, specifically, as it is about local government powers, generally, and the direct and indirect impacts on land use....more

10/9/2014 - Ballot Measures Local Taxes

Asheville Gets "In" On It: Innovation Districts and the Return of the Suburban Worker

We blogged last week about an innovation district coming to Durham, North Carolina, to be affectionately called "Durham ID". Asheville, North Carolina, is poised to designate three innovation districts of its own in...more

10/8/2014 - Urban Planning & Development

Call Before You Dig: North Carolina's New "Underground Utility Safety and Damage Prevention Act" Takes Effect October 1, 2014

This past session, the North Carolina General Assembly replaced the existing Underground Damage Prevention Act with the Underground Utility Safety and Damage Prevention Act, which took effect on October 1, 2014....more

10/8/2014 - New Legislation Underground Regulation Utilities Sector

North Carolina Ranks Third Among U.S. States, First In the East, In Solar Power Installations for 2013

The Interstate Renewable Energy Council reports in its U.S. Solar Market Trends 2013 that North Carolina ranks third among U.S. states in solar power installations in 2013. The 261 megawatts installed, which is how these...more

10/7/2014 - Energy Energy Policy Renewable Energy Solar Energy

The Onion Spoofs Land Use, Cites the "Admittedly Crazy Idea" of Urban Waterfront Revitalization

So many great ideas sound so simple, so obvious after development and actualization, right? Velcro. Tupperware. The cheeseburger. Buying a condo in Manhattan's West Village in 1987....more

10/7/2014 - Redevelopment Urban Planning & Development Waterfront Properties

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