Delayed Rezoning Not a Taking, Court Says

Lawlor, James
January 2006
Planning;Jan2006, Vol. 72 Issue 1, p42
Trade Publication
The article reports that the South Carolina Supreme Court has ruled in the Byrd versus City of Hartsville that to rezone a landowner's property does not constitute a compensable regulatory taking. Phelix Byrd, who owns a land parcel that lies partly within Hartsville and partly within adjoining Darlington County, decided to subdivide and sell his property to developers. But the buyer demanded that the land parcel should be rezoned commercial. Therefore, Byrd filed a rezoning petition, but the city council repeatedly deferred action on it because permitting commercial development on any of the former Coker Farms property would lead the National Park Service to withdraw the designation. Byrd sued the city and county and claimed that the rezoning delay was a regulatory taking and that the city and the county had engaged in a conspiracy to block the issuance of deeds. Therefore, he appealed the takings ruling. According to the court, because he had suffered a temporary economic loss but he was still able to continue farming it.


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