At what point does government red tape become so onerous that it amounts to a taking of private property for which the property owner must be compensated under the Fifth Amendment? That has been a much-discussed question for some time now. I know that some people say the answer is never, but there are indications that the courts may be heading in the other direction.
Two recent cases are illustrative. One is a decision that allows local governments to be sued in state court when a property owner claims that regulations amount to a taking. The other is a California case involving the imposition of historical review requirements after the property owner was allowed to demolish the purportedly historic building on his property.
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