One of the most important issues in modern environmental law and policy is the extent to which constitutionally-protected property rights limit environmental regulatory programs at the federal, state and local levels. Indeed, the U.S. Supreme Court has focused more attention on this question over the last four decades than any other aspect of modern environmental law and policy.
So it’s a very good thing that there’s an annual opportunity for environmental scholars, practitioners and policymakers to stay abreast of current developments in the constantly-evolving field of “regulatory takings.” For the past 19 years, Professor John Echeverria (formerly of the Georgetown University Law Center and now teaching at Vermont Law School) has organized an excellent, yearly conference entitled “Litigating Takings Challenges to Land Use and Environmental Regulations.” This year’s edition will be held on November 4th at Tulane University School of Law in New Orleans. The conference agenda and registration information can be found here.
As in years past, this November’s conference brings together a philosophically-diverse set of speakers to discuss the most controversial and cutting-edge regulatory takings topics and cases. For example, one panel will focus on the Murr v. State of Wisconsin case, currently pending in the U.S. Supreme Court, that raises the always-important “relevant parcel” aspect of regulatory takings law. (Legal Planet colleague Ann Carlson ably summarized the Murr litigation in a previous post.) Former U.S. Department of the Interior Solicitor and current Hastings Law Professor John Leshy will deliver a keynote address on recent, property rights-based legal challenges to the legitimacy of the federal government’s ownership of one-third of all the land in the United States. And a panel of scholars led by Professor Echeverria will discuss the takings legacy of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
I commend this important and worthwhile conference to those interested in takings law and its intersection with environmental regulation.
One more important feature of the conference: it’s free of charge to law school faculty and enrolled law students!