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Salyer Land Co. v. Tulare Water Dist.

Citation: 3 ELR 20437
No. No. 71-1456, 410 U.S. 719/(U.S., 03/20/1973)

State legislatures may constitutionally limit the franchise for election of directors of water district to individual and corporate landowners, and weight votes according to the assessed valuation of property owned by each voter. The Supreme Court rules that enfranchisement of non-resident landowners, and disenfranchisement of resident lessees, does not violate the Equal Protection clause. The water district focuses its operations on land rather than people, imposes its financial burdens in proportion to assessed land values, and exercises no "normal governmental authority", having authority only to acquire, store, and distribute water. Due to the special nature and limited extent of the district's powers, the "one man, one vote" principle is here inapplicable.

Counsel for Plaintiff
Thomas K. Greer
110 Maple Avenue
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151

Counsel for Defendant
Ernest M. Clark
600 South Spring Street
Los Angeles, California 90014

Robert W. Newell
650 South Grand Avenue, Suite 500
Los Angeles, California 90017

Denslow Green
219 South D Street
Madera, California 93637

George Bayse
1007 7th Street, Suite 500
Sacramento, California 95814