Urge House Committee to OPPOSE
HB 519 - Bert Harris Property Rights Act
which amends the Bert J. Harris Property Rights Act.
This bill significantly amends the Bert J. Harris Property Rights Act and substantially handicaps local government's ability to resolve these claims.
- The bill requires any settlement reached on a Harris claim that involves the issuance of a variance or exception to a regulation on a residential property be automatically applied by the government entity to all similarly situated residential properties that are subject to the same rules or regulations. Similarly situated is not defined in the bill. In essence, the bill will make an exception to a rule, the new rule. Variances are not handed out carte blanche by government entities.
- The bill fails to take into account notice provisions, hearings, or even impacts on neighboring property owners when giving an across the board variance. Therefore, the legislation will have a severe chilling effect on the settlement of Harris claims.
- The bill is a thinly veiled attack to cities and counties who have been dealing with Harris claims due to the enactment of vacation rental ordinances. However, the bill has a far reaching impacts on land use regulations, environmental regulations and code enforcement regulations.
- The bill limits the time frame for government entities to respond to Harris claims from 150 days to 90 days, and increases the likelihood of paying the property owners attorney fees.
- Under current law, a jury can award damages from a Harris claim based on the loss of property value and cannot consider any business damages relative to an activity, or use the government has restricted or prohibited. The bill would now allow for the compensation of business damages in addition to the loss of property.
to view the Issue Background