Brief Fact Summary. In this case Dolan (Petitioner) challenges the decision of the Supreme Court of Oregon, which held that the City of Tigard could condition the approval of her building permit on the dedication of a portion of her property for flood control and traffic improvements.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. No precise mathematical calculation is required, but the city must make some sort of individualized determination that the required dedication is related both in nature and extent to the impact of the proposed development.
Issue. Were the requirements placed on Petitioner as a condition of her permit to rebuild on her property reasonably related to the redevelopment?
Held. No. Reversed.
Under the doctrine of “unconstitutional conditions,” the government may not require a person to give up a constitutional right, here the right to receive just compensation when property is taken for public use, in exchange for a discretionary benefit conferred by the government when the property sought has little or no relationship to the benefit.
This case will decide the required degree of connection between the exactions and the projected impact of the proposed development. The “reasonable relationship” test is the appropriate test, but the court adopts the “rough proportionality” test since its terminology best encapsulates the requirement under the Fifth Amendment.
No precise mathematical calculation is required, but the city must make some sort of individualized determination that the required dedication is related both in nature and extent to the impact of the proposed development.
The court found that the findings upon which the city relies did not show the required reasonable relationship between the floodplain easement and the petitioner’s proposed new building. The court also found that the city had to make some effort to quantify its findings in support of the dedication for the pedestrian/ bicycle path beyond the statement that it could offset some of the increased traffic generated.
Dissent. Both of the dissents essentially find fault with the majority’s shifting of the burden of proof to the governmental entity seeking to uphold the regulation. The dissents would not abandon the traditional presumption of constitutionality in favor of the government.
Discussion. The property owner does not have nearly the resources of the governmental entity whose regulation is being challenged. The governmental entity can perhaps better afford to commission land use studies, which tend to buttress their regulations.