TWO SUPREME COURT RULINGS

Two Supreme Court rulings have recently signaled a turning of the tide against government overreach and abuse of individuals constitutional property rights.  In the case of Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency the Supreme Court found that the federal government through the EPA had given its’ employees nearly unfettered authority to violate individual’s property rights.  The SackettCourt found that simply because the EPA might issue a compliance order to a property owner, that is not the end of the line; that even such compliance orders are subject to further review by our court system.

In the case of Koontz v. St. Johns Water Management District, the Supreme Court also found that the water management district was trying to effectively coerce Mr. Koontz into giving away his property without due process and without just compensation.  The Court held that a government may not deny a benefit to an individual, simply because they exercised their constitutional property rights.  A government may not simply deny or refuse to issue an individual a building permit without a sufficient relationship between the conditions demanded by the government and the permit being sought by the individual.  No longer may a government simply demand whatever it wants as a condition of issuing a required permit to develop one’s own land.

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