On April 1, Nossaman’s Eminent Domain Group hosted a webinar to discuss the impacts COVID-19 is having on the Right of Way industry. First, I’d like to thank the people who attended, many of whom added thoughtful questions to the discussion. It’s clear a lot of people are giving these issues a lot of thought. Second, obviously things continue to evolve at a breathtaking pace, and even by the time this post goes from being drafted to appearing on the blog, things are likely to change.
Note that this post is not meant to recap the things we discussed at the webinar. If you weren’t able to join us and want to review what we covered, feel free to download the COVID-19 PowerPoint we used, or watch the entire recorded webinar. No, the purpose of this post is to provide some insights as to what other right of way professionals are thinking about a few of these issues. During the webinar, we asked several poll questions, and since the Nossaman team found the results interesting, I’m hoping some of you will as well ...
When the California Supreme Court issued its ruling on Property Reserve v. Superior Court, handing a substantial victory to public agencies, we were given three key takeaways: (1) the Right of Entry statutes (CCP §1245.010 et seq.) are constitutional, (2) the activities the Department of Water Resources sought to undertake are covered by the broad scope of these statues, and (3) if the language of a statute doesn’t match your planned opinion, you can always reform it to match the claimed legislative intent of the statute.
To that last point, the Court’s opinion included its ...
For the last two-plus years, we have been waiting for guidance from the California Supreme Court on whether public agencies could utilize the statutory right of entry procedure to gain access to private property to conduct investigations and testing. Such activities are routinely part of the environmental approval process for public works projects, and if agencies are forced to go through a regular condemnation proceeding, projects could be delayed for many months or even years. Today, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Property Reserve v. Superior Court, holding the right ...
Today, the California Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the Property Reserve v. Superior Court case. Today was also the day the Court began showing live webcasts of oral arguments online, so I was able to not only hear the arguments but see the Justices and attorneys in action. If the Court provides a link to the oral arguments, I will include that in another post.
My initial reaction from the oral arguments - all of the Justices were very engaged in the arguments and the Court hammered both sides pretty soundly. If I had to pick a winner, I think they went easier on the State.
The Court did ...
The California Supreme Court announced today that the Property Reserve case will be heard on May 3, 2016, at 9:00 a.m. in San Francisco. (I'm assuming this is not an April Fool's joke, since eminent domain attorneys have been awaiting this for a long time now.)
The Court will decide whether California's precondemnation right of entry statutes are constitutional. As has been discussed at length for more than a year in our industry, the decision could effect sweeping changes in how condemning agencies access properties for necessary inspections and testing. We posted a detailed ...
Eminent domain practitioners have been waiting for nearly two years for the Supreme Court to issue its decision in Property Reserve v. Superior Court. At issue is the constitutionality of California's "Right of Entry" statutes, which allow an agency to enter onto private property for certain inspections and testing without filing a condemnation action. In Property Reserve, the Court of Appeal rejected an agency's efforts to conduct precondemnation testing and inspections, finding that the statutory procedure essentially amounts to allowing a taking without payment of just ...
For decades, California public agencies have utilized a statutory "right of entry" procedure to gain access to private property to conduct investigations and testing before deciding whether to move forward with acquiring the property. (See Code of Civil Procedure section 1245.010 et seq.) That process was thrown into flux in 2014 with the Court of Appeal’s decision in Property Reserve v. Superior Court, which struck down an agency’s efforts to conduct precondemnation investigation and testing, concluding that any significant physical intrusion onto private property ...
Next week, Nossaman's eminent domain group will be attending the International Right of Way Association's Annual Education Conference in San Diego. While we've been attending the conference for several years, we're excited to have it taking place in our own backyard, and we know that our friends and colleagues at Chapter 11 will do an amazing job with it. If you're going to be there, make sure you take some time to visit with us. There will be plenty of places to find us:
- On Sunday and Monday, we will be hosting a booth in the exhibition hall. In addition to it being a great opportunity to seek ...
Just a few months ago, the California Court of Appeal handed down a significant decision in Property Reserve v. Superior Court which nearly eviscerated public agencies' ability to make use of the statutory "right of entry" procedure to gain access to private property to conduct any significant investigations and testing. The Court held that any notable physical intrusion onto private property constituted a taking, meaning the public agency needed to proceed with an eminent domain proceeding. The decision caused an uproar among public agencies across the state. Well, pump the ...
Last week, the Court of Appeal issued a decision that may be one of the ones we look back on as among the most significant of 2014 (at least in the world of eminent domain). For years (and certainly for the entire 20 years I've been doing this), public agencies have utilized a statutory "right of entry" procedure to gain access to private property to conduct investigations and testing before deciding whether to move forward with a condemnation action. (See Code of Civil Procedure section 1245.010 et seq.) Often, this happens during the CEQA process, as agencies try to assess the ...
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