December 27, 2013

Of Jerry Brown and Santa Claus

By Anthony L. Francois Senior Attorney

It appears to be PLF week at the San Diego Union Tribune.  Today the paper published this OpEd by PLF attorneys Harold Johnson and yours truly.  The piece discusses PLF’s pending challenge to San Jose’s affordable housing exactions in the California Supreme Court on behalf of the California Building Industry Association.

The piece opens with a classic bit of wisdom from California’s sometime philosopher-governor: when it comes to government programs, “there is no Santa Claus.”

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Lynch v. California Coastal Commission

The Lynch family sought permission from the California Coastal Commission to repair a storm-damaged seawall and stairway that led from their home at the top of a bluff down to the beach. The Commission permitted the seawall restoration with a condition that they seek an additional permit in the future, and denied the permit for the stairway. To protect their home, the Lynches accepted the conditioned permit under protest and repaired the seawall. PLF represents the Lynches, arguing that the seawall conditional permit and denial of the stairway permit violated their constitutional property rights. California’s appellate courts rejected the Lynch’s claims, and the California Supreme Court added insult to injury by holding that the Lynches forfeited their claims altogether by accepting the permit and repairing the seawall.

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