November 2, 2016

Florida City Robs A Family Of Constitutional Property Rights

By Florida City Robs A Family Of Constitutional Property Rights

PLF Director of Communications Harold Johnson is joined by PLF Atlantic Center Managing Attorney Mark Miller to discuss PLF’s latest litigation for our signature cause; the defense of everyone’s property rights.

The City of Marathon has robbed a family of constitutional property rights, and deprived family members of a legacy from their late parents, by designating their nine-acre island as a bird preserve, or “rookery,” prohibiting the family from building a home or anything else on the vacant property.

The city is violating the Constitution by refusing to pay the family a meaningful form of “just compensation,” as the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause demands when government seizes private property or prohibits any economically beneficial use of it.

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Ganson v. City of Marathon, Florida

The Beyer family owns a 9-acre island off the Florida coast that was reclassified from a general zoning designation to a bird rookery that permitted no use of the property other than temporary camping. Instead of offering compensation for this taking of property, as required by the Fifth Amendment, the city offered the Beyers only transferable development credits toward possible purchase of a limited number of development permits in other locations.

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