Since this is the season for self-congratulatory industry awards, we can't overlook one of our industry's highest honors, the Zoning and Planning Law Report Land Use Decision Awards (aka the "ZiPLeRs"). For those of you who do not subscribe to the Zoning and Planning Law Report, the "strangest, or at least more dramatic" land use cases each year are eligible for nomination for a ZiPLeR.
Our Owners' Counsel and ABA colleage Dwight Merriam recently announced the 2013 Awards in the December 2013 issue of ZPLR, but before he got to his tongue-in-cheek detailing of such winners as the "You Can't Pigeonhole These Pets As An Accessory Use Award," the "Don't Be An Ass Award," and "The Grinch Who Stole The Treehouse Award," he started off with "The Koontz Corner," a few pages on the goings-on surrounding one our favorite decisions last year, Koontz v. St. Johns Water Management District, No. 11-1147 (June 25, 2013). Dwight writes:
Koontz has bolstered the bravado of property rights advocates nationwide. At the other end of the spectrum, government-sided people — Professor Daniel R. Mandelker characterizes them (and himself)as "police power hawks" — have succumbed to one of the most frightening diseases ever experienced in modern times. It has come to be called "Koontz Catatonia" and the tragedy of it is there appears to be no effective treatment and no way to stop it from spreading and paralyzing the community of land-use planners and regulators.. . . .
So, to Prof. Echeverria we present the Koontz Catatonia Award with the hope that Vermont Law School will create a foundation to find a cure. Actually, the passage of time will likely see this infliction fade away as people realize that Koontz has had little or no effect on land use decision making.
Read the entire piece here. Oh yes, there's also the other ZiPLeRs. Don't miss those, either.