Brad Kuhn, Chair Of Eminent Domain and Valuation Practice Group, Quoted In NorCal Record
Brad Kuhn, Chair of Nossaman's Eminent Domain and Valuation Practice Group, was quoted in the NorCal Record story, "Attorney: Supreme Court Decisions In Precondemnation Case A Mix Of Win For State Agencies And Property Owners." The article focuses on the California Supreme Court's decision earlier this summer to reform California's statutory process for public agencies to secure access to private property as part of the environmental due diligence process. The California Supreme Court handed down its ruling in the case, Property Reserve v. Superior Court, on July 21, 2016. The decision upheld the ability for public agencies to gain such access without going through a formal eminent domain proceeding, and also reformed a state statute to include the right to a jury trial when it comes to determining just compensation for such entries. Commenting on the impact of the case, Mr. Kuhn said that the decision is a big win for public agencies, and that "Rights of entry are a necessary component to keep public projects on schedule while still complying with the maze of environmental laws that govern their approval. If the court had elected to strike down the law as unconstitutional, agencies would have had no choice but to resort to a formal condemnation action just to gain access to a property for environmental testing - a process which takes nearly a year just to gain possession." This would have added additional complications for projects with federal funding because federal law typically requires environmental processes be complete before and agency begins the condemnation process, Mr. Kuhn added.