Initiatives have made their way onto this November's ballot in six Western states — Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada and Washington — that would sharply limit the concept of eminent domain and bar government seizure of private property without just compensation. Until recently, these initiatives have drawn little attention, but planners and policymakers around the country are beginning to take note of them, and for good reason.
Translation: These initiatives would gut local and state abilities to enact or enforce virtually any regulations affecting private land use and development.
And more: They would require government to compensate property owners for the worth, in the form of lost property value and/or lost potential income, of any restrictions imposed upon them. The cost to municipalities of enforcing commercial and residential zoning regulations, environmental quality laws, and so on would be devastating.