Constitutional Law Zoning, Planning & Land Use

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Phoenix, Arizona Wins Religious Land Use Suit

A Phoenix federal court recently issued a decision that may be of interest to local governments for two reasons. First, the case, Salman v. City of Phoenix (D. AZ 2015), is notable for its finding that RLUIPA claims cannot...more

East End Eruv Association posts win in state court; fight in E.D.N.Y. continues

For the past 5-plus years, East End Eruv Association (“EEEA”) has been involved in federal litigation seeking approval to construct an eruv in accordance with its religious beliefs (East End Eruv Association v. Westhampton...more

If At First You Succeed, Don’t Try, Try, Try Again

The Fifth District Court of Appeal has confirmed that the 90-day statute of limitations under the Subdivision Map Act includes takings claims arising out of Map Act decisions. Honchariw_v._County_of_Stanislaus, No. F069145...more

State of Tennessee Sues EPA and the Corps of Engineers on Waters of the United States Final Rule

Today, the State of Tennessee joined in one of the many lawsuits filed by States challenging the EPA and Corps of Engineers Final Rule that defines of Waters of the United States under the federal Clean Water Act. See...more

Inverse Condemnation

Inverse condemnation is a far more complex subject than it may seem at the outset. While condemnation proceedings are initiated by the government to acquire property and pay the owner just compensation, the general rule...more

Supreme Court Affirms FHA Disparate Impact Claims

Late last month, the Supreme Court handed down a significant decision affecting rights and obligations under the Fair Housing Act. The Court’s 5-4 decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive...more

Tenth Circuit Rejects Constitutional Challenge to Colorado’s Renewable Energy Mandate

On July 13, the Tenth Circuit upheld Colorado’s renewable energy mandate against a claim that it impermissibly interferes with interstate commerce. This decision, addressing a state’s power to encourage or require the...more

Hydraulic Fracturing: State Regulatory Roundup Vol. 43

Fracking Insider Readers: We are pleased to bring you Volume 43 of our State Regulatory Roundup, including updates in California, New York, and Ohio. As we explained in earlier volumes, we designed the Roundup to provide...more

EPA’s Chesapeake Bay TMDL Survives Legal Challenge: Stricter Water Quality Regulation of Farms, Municipalities, Industry, and...

On July 6, 2015, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit unanimously rejected a challenge brought by agricultural and builder groups to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Chesapeake Bay...more

CT Law of the Land

Week of July 6 - In June 2015, the Connecticut Appellate Court issued two significant land use decisions summarized below. In the first decision the Court analyzed when a town’s zoning regulation might be deemed void...more

RLUIPA Round-Up

Religion Clause Blog reports that Indiana’s First Church of Cannabis is using the state’s recently enacted religious freedom law to protect its founder and two members from prosecution for possession of marijuana. The Church...more

The Newest Sign for Some Sign Ordinances: Stop

Sign ordinances and regulations are a fixture of city and county zoning and land use regulations, designed to prevent unattractive clutter from obstructing the public view. In creating these regulations, however, local...more

Supreme Court Decides Two First Amendment Cases

Two recent Supreme Court decisions provide timely guidance on the First Amendment implications of publicly displaying the Confederate Flag or other symbols or signage related to protected beliefs. First, in Walker v. Sons of...more

California Supreme Court Upholds San Jose's Inclusionary Housing Ordinance As Valid Land Use Restriction

In a unanimous decision that included two concurrences, the California Supreme Court upheld San Jose's inclusionary housing ordinance against a facial challenge that alleged an unconstitutional taking of the developer's...more

Arizona Town's Content-Based Sign Rules Struck Down by U.S. Supreme Court

Local agencies urged to review sign codes in favor of content-neutral rules - The United States Supreme Court recently struck down portions of an Arizona town’s sign code that subjected ideological, political and...more

Supreme Court Strikes Down Ordinance Regulating Directional Signs

In the case of Reed v. Town of Gilbert, the United States Supreme Court recently issued a significant decision regarding municipal sign regulation The Town of Gilbert regulated signage differently based on the content of the...more

2015 Florida Legislative Update: Environment, Growth Management and Water

The Florida Legislature concluded its 2015 regular session on May 1, 2015. However, for all practical purposes, the session ended on April 28, when the House unexpectedly adjourned three days early after it became clear the...more

New Legislation Enacted to Protect the Use of Private Property

In the 2015 session, the Legislature passed and the Governor signed House Bill 383 to address unconstitutional conditions by government agencies on the use of private property in Florida. This expands the existing Bert...more

Ten Commandments Monument on Public Grounds Violates Oklahoma Constitution

In a case we have been following, Oklahoma’s Supreme Court has ruled that a Ten Commandments monument on the Oklahoma Capitol grounds is unconstitutional under state law. We previously reported on the lower court’s decision...more

RLUIPA Round Up – Independence Day Special Edition!

Independence Day—no better time to reflect on the numerous (enumerated and unenumerated) rights protected by our United States Constitution. Thanks to Obergefell v. Hodges, those rights are now more clearly focused. However,...more

RLUIPA Suit Looms After Controversial Connecticut Church Denial

The Danbury Zoning Board of Appeals denied a church’s application for variances to develop an 18-acre parcel with a house of worship and priest residence. Now, Danbury could join the list of Connecticut municipalities that...more

Guest Commentary: Life after Reed v Gilbert

Last week, we reported on the potential impact of Reed v. Gilbert, the sign regulation case that has municipalities across the nation concerned about the enforceability of local sign ordinances. This week, we’re happy to...more

Irrigation District Sues, Says State Board Lacks Jurisdiction to Curtail Senior Water Rights

On June 26, the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District (BBID) filed a petition for writ of mandate in Contra Costa County Superior Court requesting that the Court set aside the State Water Resources Control Board’s June 12, 2015...more

The Supreme Court Recognizes but Limits Disparate Impact in its Fair Housing Act Decision

On June 25, 2015, the Supreme Court, by a 5-4 margin, upheld the application of disparate impact under the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”) in Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc....more

In Suing Commonwealth of PA, Clean Air Council Takes A Stand For Up-To-Date Building Codes

There is a war on building codes across the United States, and Pennsylvania is ground zero. After years of regular building code updates, a law was passed in 2011 (Act 1) at the urging of the Pennsylvania Builders...more

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