Supreme Court Sides With Wisconsin In Property Rights Case

Supreme Court Sides With Wisconsin In Property Rights Case.
The U.S. Supreme Court delivered a victory today to state and local governments and environmental groups with a major property rights decision.
By a 5-3 vote, the justices sided with the government in certain disputes with private property developers.
NPR legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg reports.
NINA TOTENBERG, BYLINE: The Constitution bars the taking of private property by the government without just compensation.
And the Supreme Court for a century has said that when the government goes too far in regulating property so as to make it economically unusable, the government also has to compensate the owner.
The regulations barred building on any lot smaller than one acre of land.
TOTENBERG: John Groen of the Pacific Legal Foundation represented the Murrs.
TOTENBERG: The reason, he explains, is that when the government regulates private land use… LAZARUS: It almost never says that you can’t do anything with all the property you own.
TOTENBERG: And what the Supreme Court said today was that property owners are not entitled to compensation from the government when regulations reduce the value of the property by a relatively small portion and where, as in this case, those regulations to some degree have enhanced the value of the property.

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