Sunday, September 23, 2007

Tucson minidorm developer threatens $12M suit

[Source: Rob O'Dell, Daily Star] -- A developer of minidorms near the University of Arizona has threatened a $12.6 million lawsuit against the city — which his lawyer hopes will turn into the first test case for a new law protecting private property rights. Clint Bolick, of Rose Law Group, sent a letter to the city asserting new city restrictions on demolishing houses have hurt developer Michael Goodman's property values. At issue is a regulation passed by the City Council in June that requires a historic study be done on any 45-year-old or older building in Tucson's historic core — identified as the area inside the city limits on Oct. 6, 1953 — before it can be torn down. Following the study, the city could delay demolition for up to six months while it decides if it wants to buy the property or find a private buyer. Bolick called for the city to either change the regulations, give Goodman a waiver or compensate him for his lost value. Otherwise he said he would file the $12.6 million suit under Proposition 207, a ballot initiative passed last year requiring governments to compensate landowners if land-use rules lower their property values. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]