Government passes an ordinance affecting property value, a property owner sells the affected property to another person. The successor owner brings suit to challenge the ordinance as a regulatory taking. Does the fact that the successor purchased the property after the enactment of the ordinance destroy her takings claim? The Ninth Circuit said yes. Today, on behalf of the Manufactured Housing Institute, we filed an amicus brief in Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 10-1125 (petition for cert. filed Mar. 11, 2011). Brief Amicus Curiae of Manufactured Housing Institute, Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 10-1125 (Apr 13 2011) // Our brief points out the ways in which the Ninth Circuit ignored Palazzolo v. Rhode Island, 533 U.S. 606 (2001) which held that the transfer of property was irrelevant to a regulatory takings claim. Courts across the land have plainly ignored this core holding of Palazzolo which requires clarification from the Supreme Court. From our brief: Yet, the Ninth Circuit's decision — as inexplicable as it is in light of this Court's rejection of the notice rule in Palazzolo — is not terribly surprising, given the difficulty the lower courts have had in applying Palazzolo's clear holding. The Ninth Circuit is not the only court that is unable — or unwilling — to correctly follow Palazzolo. Lacking this Court's guidance, the default regulatory takings test has become a standardless exercise in judicial intuition, hidden behind a gloss of objectivity and faulty economic assumptions. The Ninth Circuit's divided opinion and dissent are available: Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306 (9th Cir., Dec. 22, 2010) (en banc). The cert petition is available here. Robert, at www.inversecondemnation.com, has a resource page here. [Don't laugh, but we even cited to Youtube!]
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