Monday, June 19, 2006
My father has told me the story (Happy Father’s Day, Dad!) of, when he got into the cutting-edge world of computers in the 1960s, how people predicted the arrival of the “paperless office.” Ha ha. Computers have simply created more paper than ever before, especially for lawyers. What happens when a lawyer piles up too much paper in his apartment office, creating a potential fire hazard? Does a citizen have a property right to be messy, or does the police power justify government action?
From Arlington, Virginia, comes a story about a lawyer who was evicted from his condo for too much paper … and other junk. A problem with anti-“hoarding” laws is, of course, that they hold the potential for inconsistent, unfair, and selective enforcement. In today’s relatively safe cities, however, we can forget how dominant was the fear of fire in the development of modern land use laws. In addition to creating a fire hazard, too much clutter can make it difficult for emergency responders to provide assistance and to get in and out safely. The biggest problem I have with the Virginia story is that the government officials apparently evicted the lawyer immediately, without giving him some time to “cure” his clutter problem. He is, of course, suing the government ….
This blog is an Amazon affiliate. Help support Land Use Prof Blog by making purchases through Amazon links on this site at no cost to you.
- Katherine Dentzman on A Coordinated Approach to Food Safety and Land Use Law at the Urban Fringe
- Jesse Richardson on Local Regulation of Hydraulic Fracturing
- Jamie Baker Roskie on Local Regulation of Hydraulic Fracturing
- Samuel on Schleicher and Rauch on local regulation of the sharing economy
- Timothy Wayne George on Is Reed v. Town of Gilbert an important sign case?
- Water Down Under: A Report from Australia by Barb Cosens: Post 2: Comparative Water Law: Australia and the western United States or Conversations with Claire
- APA Planning & Law Division's Smith-Babcock-Williams Student Writing Competition now accepting entries
- Jan 30 - Boston U Law - The Iron Triangle of Food Policy - AJLM Symposium
- "Basic Human Right" to Farm Your Lawn?
- CFP: Fordham Law: Sharing Economy, Sharing City: Urban Law and the New Economy