Tuesday, January 8, 2008
Most of land use law is determined by local authorities, of course. But the federal government, which has taken over large areas of environmental and employment law (which used to be reserved mostly to the states), is playing a more active role in shaping land use. At the law professor conference in New York last week, one of the most interesting talks was given by Prof. Patricia Salkin (also a blogger) on the power of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. (Here's a DOJ website, then one of a private organization that challenges land use laws, and a previous post of mine about the act.) By empowering a religious group to challenge in federal court a local land use law decision, and by granting to the group an amorphous set of rights, the statute offer a temptation for projects that bear only a tenuous relation to religion to try to avoid land use regulation. And by providing for attorneys fees to winning challengers -- fees that have to be paid by local governments -- the act places upon localities a pressure to settle even marginally colorable cases, in order to avid the risk of a huge fee award. It's unfortunate that the burdens of the federal law fall largely on localities. (Is this an unfounded mandate of sorts?) Will we soon see local governments seeking out RLUIPA insurance?
[Note: Comments must be approved and thus take some time to appear online.]
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 R. Miller on Why are building inspectors so often on the take?
- Josh Hightree on What makes people leave rural areas, and what makes them stay
- Jessica Shoemaker on What makes people leave rural areas, and what makes them stay
- Jamie Baker Roskie on Why are building inspectors so often on the take?
- Stephen R. Miller on What makes people leave rural areas, and what makes them stay
- Water Down Under: A Report from Australia by Barbara Cosens: Post 5: Indigenous Rights to Water and Capacity Building
- Land Use Law-Related Articles Posted on SSRN in February
- March 4-6: Stanford 2015 Rural West Conference: Preservation and Transformation: The Future of the Rural West
- March 3 - J.B. Ruhl to deliver Boehl Distinguished Lecture in Land Use Policy at U Louisville Law
- Is this blog post "advertising"? California's bar proposes bright-line rule for regulating attorney blogs