The Overreach of the E.P.A.: Fact or Fiction?

 

 

            Earlier this month the House Energy and Commerce Committee passed a bill, the “Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011,” which, if it becomes law, would effectively halt the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed program to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.  This is one of many attempts in an ongoing campaign by Republicans to limit the power of the EPA to make and enforce regulations related to greenhouse gas emissions.  They are attempting this through budgetary control measures as well as by attempting to strip the EPA of its regulatory authority in this area through legislation. There appears to be an intentional effort to cast this as a battle between the legislative and executive branches.  However, this is actually a battle royal including all three branches of the federal government, as well as many state, local, and private organizations.  It is important to look at the recent history of this fight … Read the rest

Regulatory Takings in Real Property: Fact or Fiction?

We are constantly changing the fundamental character of property ownership in this country.  Nowhere is this more evident than in the real property arena. As the past few years have shown us, real estate has morphed from a long-term, stable investment to become a hugely derivative enterprise, which has diversified and become interconnected with other sectors of the economy as never before.  The argument has been made that real estate has lost its original character and that it has become commoditizedRegardless of one’s position on this question it is clear that because of this continual transformation, takings law is constantly pressured to look at situations where the new concept of economic devaluation of property must be reconciled with the traditional notion of the bundle of sticks, and the state’s inability to render that bundle obsolete by legislative action, without compensation. Herein lies the basic regulatory takings Read the rest