In Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council, the United States Supreme Court, in an opinion authored by Justice Scalia, held that "[W]hen the owner of real property has been called upon to sacrifice all economically beneficial uses in the name of the common good, that is, to leave his property economically idle, he has suffered a taking." After years of struggling with the issue, the Court has taken an initial step that may shift the balance between public regulation and private property rights in favor of the landowner. This Note examines the impact that Lucas could have on the struggle between public and private rights. First, the Note presents the events leading up to the Supreme Court's consideration of Lucas, including an examination of the three cases during the past decade presaging this victory for private property rights. Second, the Note examines the majority's emphasis on a public nuisance consideration in takings cases. Finally, this Note considers how the Court's new per se takings rule, which requires compensation when a regulation denies a property owner all economically beneficial use of his property, will affect takings jurisprudence.
Kent A. Meyerhoff,
Regulatory Takings—Winds of Change Blow along the South Carolina Coast: Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council, 112 S. Ct. 2886 (1992),
72 Neb. L. Rev.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/nlr/vol72/iss2/8