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Making Regulatory Takings Reform Work: The Lessons of Oregon's Measure 37

June 2009

Citation: 39 ELR 10516

Issue: 6

Author: Alex Potapov

Editors' Summary

Oregon's Measure 37 was an audacious attempt to create an expansive regulatory takings regime. Contrary to the hopes of its supporters and the fears of its opponents, however, it ultimately failed to provide any significant relief to property owners. The difficulties the Measure encountered can be traced to two primary causes: poor drafting and the hostile attitude of government officials. While these problems are likely to cause difficulties for any regulatory takings initiative, they are not necessarily insurmountable. It is also possible for a regulatory takings initiative to succeed in another way--by forcing the state government to take the problem of excessive regulation seriously. In this respect, Measure 37 has arguably been a success.

Alex Potapov is law clerk to Judge Stephen F. Williams, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

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