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KOONTZ v. ST. JOHNS RIVER WATER MGMT.

Docket No.: 11-1447
Certiorari Granted: Oct 5 2012
Argued: January 15, 2013
Decided: June 25, 2013

Topics:

Due Process, EPA, Fifth Amendment, Takings Clause, judicial review

PartyNames: Coy A. Koontz, Jr. v. St. Johns River Water Management District
Petitioner: Coy A. Koontz, Jr.
Respondent: St. Johns River Water Management District

Court Below: Supreme Court of Florida
Citation: 77 So.3d 1220
Supreme Court Docket

Coy A. Koontz, Jr.
v.
St. Johns River Water Management District
Background:

For over eleven years, a Florida land use agency refused to issue any of the permits necessary for Coy A. Koontz, Sr., to develop his commercial property. The reason was because Koontz would not accede to a permit condition requiring him to dedicate his money and labor to make improvements to 50 acres of government-owned property located miles away from the project-a condition that was determined to be wholly unrelated to any impacts caused by Koontz's proposed development. A Florida trial court ruled that the agency's refusal to issue the permits was invalid and effected a temporary taking of Koontz's property, and awarded just compensation. After the appellate court affirmed, the Florida Supreme Court reversed, holding that, as a matter of federal takings law, a landowner can never state a claim for a taking where (1) permit approval is withheld based on a landowner's objection to an excessive exaction, and (2) the exaction demands dedication of personal property to the public.

Question Presented:

1. Whether the government can be held liable for a taking when it refuses to issue a land-use permit on the sole basis that the permit applicant did not accede to a permit condition that, if applied, would violate the essential nexus and rough proportionality tests set out in Nollan u. California Coastal Commission, 483 U.S. 825 (1987), and Dolan v. City of Tigard, 512 U.S. 374 (1994); and 2. Whether the nexus and proportionality tests set out in Nollan and Dolan apply to a land-use exaction that takes the form of a government demand that a permit applicant dedicate money, services, labor, or any other type of personal property to a public use.

KOONTZ v. ST. JOHNS RIVER WATER MGMT.
ORAL ARGUMENT

January 15, 2013

Listen to Oral Argument in KOONTZ v. ST. JOHNS RIVER WATER MGMT.
Holding: REVERSED AND REMANDED
Vote: 5-4
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