Just in case you lost track of the Martins Beach saga, here is a quick summary and update. According to reports, a couple of years after billionaire Vinod Khosla bought beachfront property in San Mateo County for over $30 million, his property manager locked a gate to a private access road on the property. This access road, however, in addition to providing access to the property's residence, also had been used by the public to access Martins Beach (the parties do not agree as to whether the public use was permissive or under claim of right).
Following the gate closure, lawsuits have been ...
The House of Representatives has once again resurrected the "Private Property Rights Protection Act" (HR 1944), a bill that would limit the power of eminent domain on a nationwide scale. I say once again, because as we reported in 2012 (see January 26, 2012 post by Brad Kuhn), the House Judiciary Committee approved a nearly identical bill by an overwhelming 23-5 vote, only to have the bill languish on the House floor. The vote this time around, however, was nowhere near as emphatic, as the bill barely passed out of the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice with a skimpy 5-3 ...
Before you get your hopes up, this is not a reference to "Opposites Attract" by Paula Abdul, and I will not be singing. Rather, I am referring to the Montana Legislature's recent decision to repeal a two-year-old law that gave private power-line developers the authority to condemn private property. The 2011 law was passed in order to override a state court decision prohibiting the use of eminent domain for private power-line development. As reported in the Independent Record, supporters of the repeal effort believe "that the law gave unprecedented power to private companies to run ...
When I was a child, a long long time ago, I learned the importance of paying attention to detail. While I will not bore you with the details of my adolescence and the shenanigans that forced my parents to drive home this message, I will tell you that I certainly learned to always cross my T's and dot my I's. Late last week, the California Court of Appeal issued an unpublished decision in Compton Unified School District v. Hassan, Case No. B233412, prohibiting an after-the-fact challenge to a condemnation order issued almost two years prior, largely on the ...
Reflecting on the Golden Age of Saturday Night Live, icons such as Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Steve Martin, Jane Curtin, and Dan Aykroyd jump to mind. As such, it should come as no surprise that one of my favorite recurring characters has always been Emily Litella. An old lady who would spend a minute or so railing against some ridiculous topic premised on a mistaken understanding of some headline or story, only to conclude with a sweet "never mind" after the error was pointed out to her. In a recent per curiam decision by the United States Court of ...
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