Monday, October 8, 2007
Retreat!” is the cry of many environmentalists and some economists in regard to government support of human development on risky coastal areas. Historically, federal and state programs have given developers and owners insurance and security to build in attractive but storm-prone coastal regions, such as those along the Gulf of Mexico.
But in some places, such as Bay St. Louis, Miss., which felt the full brunt of hurricane Katrina in 2005, a debate is raging over a change in policy. Among other things, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is offering a buyout of homes, in the hope of rebuilding wetlands (which act as a buffer to storms) and discouraging the rebuilding of houses along the coast. Among local concerns about the plan is the worry that reconstruction will be done in a patchwork manner –- with a rebuilt house next to a bought-out lot.
Our land use policies have typically bent over backwards to help homeowners (who are often affluent) who have built in risky areas –- insurance and buyouts have helped residents who otherwise wouldn’t have had protection from the private insurance market. To the extent that predictions suggest that it’s too risky to live in certain locations, and that the long-term public good would be served by more wetlands, government should discourage people from rebuilding –- or at least not give them insurance.
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.
- Stephen Miller on New Arkansas law requires local governments to pay for a "takings" where certain "regulatory programs" reduce FMV by at least 20 percent
- Josh Galperin on New Arkansas law requires local governments to pay for a "takings" where certain "regulatory programs" reduce FMV by at least 20 percent
- Jesse Richardson on New Arkansas law requires local governments to pay for a "takings" where certain "regulatory programs" reduce FMV by at least 20 percent
- Jamie Baker Roskie on Uber Goes to the State House Seeking Preemption of Local Government Control
- Stephen R. Miller on Why are building inspectors so often on the take?
- Michael Gerrard on Climate Change and Land Use Law
- Touro Law hosts First Annual Conference of the Land Use & Sustainable Development Law Institute
- Abstracts for 6th Annual Colloquium on Environmental Scholarship due May 1
- Space and the City - Special edition of The Economist
- Land Value Tax Redux