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Update: Briefs Roll in Amid Murr v. State of Wisconsin SCOTUS Appeal

We’ve been watching Murr v. State of Wisconsin, a regulatory taking case involving a St. Croix River family cabin, closely since the Supreme Court of the United States accepted review. The briefs are now rolling in. As explained in a previous blog post, the issue in Murr is whether two small, adjacent residential lots may […]


The Family Cabin Goes to the High Court

The U.S. Supreme Court Accepts Review of Murr v. State of Wisconsin A longer version of this blog entry appeared in the March 2016 issue of Inside Track. A family cabin on the shores of the St. Croix Scenic Riverway in Troy, Wisconsin, is making national news among eminent domain watchers. The Murr family purchased […]

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Uneconomic Remnant: One Circuit Court Judge’s View

As an eminent domain practitioner, the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision in Waller v. American Transmission Company last year left me…unsatisfied. Instead of acknowledging the statutory morass created by the legislature (incidentally, a morass acknowledged by both condemnors’ and landowners’ counsel), the majority decision ignores the procedural problems with the statutes and does nothing to make […]

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Court Holds Condemnation is Not Mandatory

In Chojnacki v. Wisconsin Public Service Corporation (“WPS”), a Wisconsin Circuit Court case venued in Portage County, WPS negotiated an easement for a gas main on Mr. Chojnacki’s property. WPS simply negotiated a price for the easement rather than following Chapter 32 condemnation procedures.  Chojnacki sued, alleging he is entitled to more money for the […]

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When Does a Condemning Authority Have to Condemn?

Chapter 32 of the Wisconsin Statutes grants the power of condemnation to governmental subdivisions, public utilities, school districts, a number of commissions, and a host of other entities.  It specifies precisely who may condemn, and specifies the purposes for which each condemning entity may exercise its power.  Chapter 32 has within its 29 pages virtually […]