Justices side with government in property rights case

He said the property as a whole remains valuable and the family could not claim they expected to sell or develop lots that were regulated before they acquired them.Central to the case was the Fifth Amendment’s limitations on the eminent domain power, which says that private property shall not “be taken for public use, without just compensation”. “Courts must instead define the parcel in a manner that reflects reasonable expectations about the property”.Roberts said he was not troubled by the majority’s “bottom-line conclusion” that the property owners were not entitled to compensation. “Accordingly, we conclude they have not alleged a compensable taking as a matter of law”, the per curiam appeals court ruling states. The ruling “compromises the Takings Clause as a barrier between individuals and the press of the public interest”. “It is our hope that property owners across the country will learn from our experience and not take their property rights for granted”.”We are disappointed the court did not recognize the fundamental unfairness to the Murrs of having their separate properties combined, simply to avoid the protection of the Takings Clause”, Groen said.The frustration to the Murrs was that someone who had owned a single lot dating to before the regulations would still be allowed to build on it. Rather, the family was subjected to a “regulatory taking” in which a law or regulation has effectually stripped them of their property. When the family came to the county, now the only eligible buyer, the county offered $40,000. Their father had purchased the two 1.25-acre lots separately in the 1960s and both parcels had been taxed separately. Petitioners have not suffered a taking.as they have not been deprived of all economically beneficial use of their property. The Supreme Court decided districts had to be roughly equal in population, on the “one person, one vote”, principle; under the Voting Rights Act, the justices protect minority voters from racially biased districting.Justice Anthony Kennedy, in a separate concurrence, agreed in dismissing the Pennsylvania case at hand, and said the Court was “correct to refrain from directing this substantial intrusion into the Nation’s political life” that would “commit federal and state courts to unprecedented intervention in the American political process”.In a petition filed in August 2015, the Murrs asked the U.S. Supreme Court to address whether the “parcel as a whole” concept from its landmark 1978 decision in Penn Central Transportation Co. vs. City of NY means that two legally distinct but commonly owned land parcels must be combined for the purposes of a takings analysis.However, a ruling against the Wisconsin Republicans could, paradoxically, open one of the bastions of Vermont Democrats’ “super-majority” status in the state Senate to a constitutional challenge.Donna Murr responded to the ruling on behalf of herself and her family.The Murrs eventually chose to sell the vacant lot.Many state governments own contiguous lots and large bodies of water near areas owned by the federal government (military bases, national parks, etc).TOTENBERG: The reason, he explains, is that when the government regulates private land use.The Murr family owns two pieces of property on the St. Croix River in Wisconsin.”We will continue the fight for property owners and for the integrity of the constitutional right against uncompensated government takings”, he continued.With Friday being the 12th anniversary of the infamous decision in Kelo v.Seventeen-odd years later, Democrats are pressing a case whose essential premise is that the Supreme Court can and should be trusted to write a whole new category of rules affecting nearly every state legislative and congressional election in the United States. The Wisconsin appeal is the latest in a series of partisan gerrymandering cases that date back to at least 1986, when the Court said in Davis v. Bandemer that it was willing to hear cases related to unlawful partisan gerrymandering.Another clear outcome of the unfair districting has been to discourage Wisconsin Democrats from participating in the many activities of democracy. “Like the ultimate question whether a regulation has gone too far”, he wrote, “the question of the proper parcel in regulatory takings cases can not be solved by any simple test”.