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Municipal Condemnation of Privately Held Utilities Continues to be a Hot Issue, but at what Cost?

In January, I spoke at a conference in Austin about efforts by municipalities to condemn privately-held utility companies. At the time, I figured it would be a one-off presentation on a pretty niche issue, even for eminent...more

Solar Industry Update:  What’s on the Back of My Ballot? What Amendment 4 Is All About

If you vote by mail, then you’ve likely already received your August 30 primary ballot with a proposed amendment to the Florida constitution on the back. It is Amendment 4, and it is the only amendment on the primary ballot....more

Do the Provisions of the Judicial Code Automatically Apply in Eminent Domain Cases? The Commonwealth Court Recently Said No.

On June 22, 2016, the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court decided the case of Township of Millcreek v. Angela Cres Trust of June 25, 1998, 1725 C.D. 2015, which decided whether 42 Pa.C.S. § 5505 applies to eminent domain cases. ...more

U.S. Supreme Court to Decide "Critical Question" in Eminent Domain

This summer, the U.S. Supreme Court will decide a critical question that will determine whether some landowners will receive compensation from regulations that restrict the uses of their land. The case, Murr v. Wisconsin, may...more

What is “Just Compensation” for Gas Station Acquisitions?

Gas stations and car washes are primarily owner-occupied convenience businesses, typically located near freeway off-ramps and at the intersections of well-traveled roadways. As a result, they’re frequently involved in...more

Are Groundwater Extraction Fees Property Related or Regulatory Fees? It Depends

Two new Proposition 218-related cases published in March come to opposite conclusions in determining whether groundwater extraction and replenishment fees are “property-related” fees subject to Article XIII D of the...more

Real Estate and Land Use - March 2015

Be Careful What You Agree To (City of San Marcos v. Loma San Marcos, LLC) - Why It matters: The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court decision upholding an agreement between the City of San Marcos and a property owner...more

Water District Not Liable In Inverse Condemnation When Water Pipe Breaks and Damages Property

California’s infrastructure is aging. There have been numerous reports of water line breaks and gas line leaks, and public agencies have been moving quickly to upgrade their utilities to minimize these risks and satisfy...more

Fracking Bans Don't Trigger Civil Authority Coverage

On Nov. 4, 2014, voters in Denton, Texas, which is home to more than 270 natural gas wells, approved a ballot initiative banning all hydraulic fracturing within the city’s limits. The Denton ban, which took effect on Dec. 2,...more

Pa. Gas Utility May Use Eminent Domain to Supply Private Power Plant

A Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, judge recently authorized a natural gas public utility to use its eminent domain power in condemning easements for the construction and maintenance of a pipeline to supply gas to a private...more

Contamination, Underwater Mortgages, and the IRWA Annual Education Conference

Along with my colleagues Brad Kuhn, Ben Rubin, and Katherine Contreras, I'm here in Hartford at the IRWA Annual Education Conference. It's been an interesting few days as we discuss eminent domain issues in the shadow of New...more

New York Landowners Threaten State with Takings Claims over Drilling Moratorium

In a draft complaint circulated to its members this week, the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York—a group of pro-drilling landowners—laid out several claims against state agencies and Governor Andrew Cuomo as a result of...more

U.S. Court Rejects Challenge To CFIUS National Security Review

This blog previously reported in July 2013 on a lawsuit that Ralls Corporation brought against the President of the United States and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States challenging the President’s order...more

The Third Circuit Reinstates Nuisance Claims Against Cheswick Generating: Bad Idea

On Wednesday, in Bell v. Cheswick Generating Station, the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals revived class action nuisance claims brought by residential property owners living within one mile of GenOn’s Cheswick Generating Station....more

The Supreme Court Speaks; Some Taxpayers Shudder

Originally published in the Commercial Property Executive on January 16, 2013. Property owners frequently raise legitimate questions about hard-to-fathom differences between assessments of similar properties, as well as...more

U.S. Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in Koontz IV, Reviewing Decision of Florida Supreme Court

We've delved into the background of the Koontz litigation here in past posts; suffice to say that it's a legal controversy between landowner Coy Koontz and his local water management district that has gone on for years (18...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinion Affecting Local Government Law: September 14, 2012

On September 14, 2012, the Virginia Supreme Court issued no opinions affecting the practice of Virginia local government law. Actually, that is not true. While no opinions involved cases with local government parties,...more

Allegheny County Countywide Reassessment Plan Adopted

As we previously reported in this newsletter, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down Allegheny County’s use of a 2002 base-year property tax assessment scheme as unconstitutional in Clifton v. Allegheny County (Pa. April...more

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