Saturday, December 17, 2005

Improving Growth Managment through Better Procedures, Standards and Judicial Review

Last year, I posted and circulated a suggestion for a set of minimal standards for the conduct and review of quasi-judicial decisions at the local level.

Here's this year's draft.

I've tweaked a few things, including making this part of Chapter 163 instead of Chapter 120 - maybe it'll get better play as a growth management bill.

I've also added a few suggested changes to complement the 2002 legislation which gave landowners/developers standing, over-ruling the Parker case. Biggest tweaks to the substance of Chapter 163: clarify the understanding that the denial of a development order that is consistent with the comprehensive plan is inconsistent with the comprehensive plan - which was the intention but not the reality. I also suggest clarifying that development orders must be consistent only with those elements of the plan that provide clear standards or objective criteria - the general rule in proper delegations, but again difficult to enforce. Finally, I suggest getting rid of the useless administrative challenge to land development regulations and replacing it with a proper de novo action in circuit court.

Please provide comments -- I'll be sending it along to the house GM committee and also to Sen. Mike Bennett.

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