Lake Tahoe's Temporary Development Moratorium: Why a Stitch in Time Should Not Define the Property Interest in a Takings Claim

Fox, Tedra
August 2001
Ecology Law Quarterly;2001, Vol. 28 Issue 2, p399
Academic Journal
Defining the "property interest" at stake in takings claims presents an ongoing challenge for the courts. Judicial outcomes may vary depending on whether a court adopts an expansive or fragmented view of the plaintiffs holdings. In Tahoe-Sierra, the Ninth Circuit soundly rejected the abstract splintering of property interests known as "conceptual severance." The court refused to allow the plaintiffs to characterize their fee parcels as limited "slices in time," thwarting their efforts to prove that a 32-month development moratorium had destroyed "all economically beneficial or productive use" of their land. This Note explores why the court's rejection of conceptual severance makes well-grounded contributions to takings law and public policy. It also sets forth rationale for why temporary development moratoriums should not be equated with the "temporary takings" found deserving of compensation by the Supreme Court in First English.


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