Starting a business or opening a new office building can be a trying experience. This is true even before you factor in the possibility of a re-zoning ordinance that will render your business plans fruitless. When this unsettling scenario comes to fruition, there are some landowners who have fought back, claiming that this action is a regulatory taking requiring just compensation  – but can this argument prevail? With some cases decided and others pending, the picture of re-zoning as a regulatory taking is beginning to take shape, though the view is far from clear.
To illustrate this problem, look at the case of Dianna Reagan who owned a steel services business and decided to build a new office building.  She consequently bought 4.7 aces of land for $134,000 and spent the next two years planning her new facility.  The land that Reagan bought was zoned industrial in… Read the rest