Property Wrongs is Sightline’s new report on what other states can learn from Oregon’s experience with Measure 37. It tells six stories of communities that got stuck with the consequences.
This is the final story in our series, but there are many more untold stories in Oregon.
Susie Kunzman and her husband love their quiet rural life. They raise alpacas, 35 of them, which have an estimated worth of $350,000. But all that could change if a proposed 80-acre gravel mine goes in just over the Kunzman’s fence line—a gravel mine that is the result of a measure 37 claim.
Alpacas are easily spooked, explains Kunzman, and the blasting and noise from crushing could stress them. Stress to an alpaca is reflected in the strength and quality of their hair, which for Kunzman equates to lost revenue. She wonders who will pay her for lost value from the effects of the mine, especially when it comes time to sell her property.
Kunzman’s other neighbors are incensed too. One neighbor, Renee Ross, summed up the community’s sentiment best when she recently told a reporter, “I hope other states don’t do this.”
Read the rest of the story.
“Stress to an alpaca is reflected in the strength and quality of their hair, which for Kunzman equates to lost revenue. She wonders who will pay her for lost value from the effects of the mine, especially when it comes time to sell her property.”That seems to be the key to an effective fight: use their weapons against them. It seems to me that such use is, in effect, a “taking” and a class action lawsuit might be the way to go.Who knows, you might even get some libertarian organization to help foot the bill. “Real” libertarians don’t believe individuals should impact each other any more than they think the government should impact individuals.
‘Jan,the key to small l property rights argumentation is that there is a reliance on pressing claims for damage post facto. A reliance on courts for remedy. There is complete reliance on the landowner that they know what is right for their land, therefore they will act in their own best interest (and therefore in others’), and then everyone will excercise their magnanimous ability to negotiate with downstream users for use and claims. Anyone who lives in a small town, or in a fractious neighborhood, or who has an idiot neighbor [“why, I’m a great neighbor! It’s the guy next door who you can’t trust!”] or who has a sleazy uncle knows how tenuous this proposition is. That is: just about everyone who has experience in the real world knows this won’t work. It’s great that folk don’t believe individuals shouldn’t impact others, but on the ground there’s little negotiation to be had with the pig-head down the road who knows everything and is bulldozing his creek under. If this method worked so great, we’d have done it millenia ago. In short: big gummint arose because good fences make good neighbors. We just don’t get along that well with everybody. Some folks, sure. Regards,
Nobody here seems to mention California’s Prop 90, which combines a very popular limitation on condemnation with a stealth requirement for compensation to property owners for new laws and regulations which substantially reduce the value of property. It’s unclear how bad this would be.