Walker signs bill inspired by cabin-owners' court fight

Corporate Law

Just five months after an adverse ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court had her in tears, Donna Murr was celebrating Monday after Gov. Scott Walker signed into law a bill that gives Wisconsin property owners more rights.

The Murr family fought for more than a dozen years, and all the way to the Supreme Court, for the ability to sell undeveloped land next to their cottage along scenic Lake St. Croix in western Wisconsin.

One of two property rights bills Walker signed Monday will give the family the right to sell or build on substandard lots if the lots were legal when they were created.

The Supreme Court ruled against the Murrs in June, but hours later state Rep. Adam Jarchow was on the phone with Donna Murr promising her he would take the fight to the Legislature.

"It's been a long road," Murr said after she and six other family members came to Walker's Capitol office for his signing of the bill Jarchow and Sen. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, introduced. "It just felt like a culmination of everything we've worked for, coming to a head today after so many years of struggling and battling."

Donna Murr's parents bought two adjacent lots in the early 1960s and built a cottage on one but left the other vacant as an investment. In 2004, Donna Murr and her siblings wanted to sell the undeveloped lot to help pay for renovations to the cottage, but county officials barred the sale because conservation rules from the 1970s treat the two lots as a single property that can't be divided.

The regulations were intended to prevent overcrowding, soil erosion and water pollution. The county argued before the Supreme Court that not enforcing the rules would undermine its ability to minimize flood damage and maintain property values in the area.

But the family claimed those rules essentially stripped the land of its value and amounted to an uncompensated seizure of the property. They sought compensation for the vacant property they were forbidden to sell. The government argued, and the Supreme Court agreed in June, that it's fair to view the property as a whole and said the family is owed nothing.

Now with the law changed in Wisconsin, the Murr family can sell the vacant section. Donna Murr said she and her siblings will take some time to decide what to do next.

Related listings

  • High court won't hear appeal from former Qwest CEO

    High court won't hear appeal from former Qwest CEO

    Corporate Law 07/23/2017

    The Supreme Court won't hear an appeal from former Qwest Communications International Inc. CEO Joseph Nacchio seeking an $18 million tax refund on money he gained from illegal stock sales.The justices on Monday left in place a lower court ruling that...

  • Court: Ignorance about allergy medicine crime no excuse

    Court: Ignorance about allergy medicine crime no excuse

    Corporate Law 07/23/2017

    Just because a man previously convicted of methamphetamine-related crimes didn't know it was now illegal for him to buy over-the-counter allergy medicine given his criminal history doesn't mean his rights were violated, a divided North Carolina Supre...

  • Court: Ohio E-School Can't Delay Repayment of $60M to State

    Court: Ohio E-School Can't Delay Repayment of $60M to State

    Corporate Law 07/03/2017

    ECOT's reported enrollment of 15,000 Ohio students makes it one of the largest online charter schools in the U.S.Democrats jumped on the court's decision to pile criticism on the school, which has struggled for years against attacks on its enrollment...

St. Louis Missouri Criminal Defense Lawyer

A National Presence with clients all over the country. For years, The Law Offices of John M. Lynch, LLC, has been committed to providing clients with the attentive service and the strong representation needed to resolve complex criminal defense, personal injury and general litigation issues. And we have achieved and unparalleled level of success. Our St. Louis trial lawyers aggressively defend state and federal cases involving drug crimes, white collar crimes, violent crimes, DWI and other crimes in the St. Louis area and beyond. As our motto states, YOUR SOLUTION BEGINS WITH US. Call us today for your free consulation!”

Any federal crime allegation or arrest can change your life. The consequences for a conviction are severe, including the possibility of fines, property forfeiture, prison time and other punishments. Aggressive representation is needed to defend against charges at the federal level. The Law Offices of John M. Lynch, LLC, offers experienced federal criminal defense for clients in St. Louis, St. Charles and surrounding communities in Missouri, Illinois and the nation. Our law firm has a proven record of success for cases involving serious federal charges.

Business News

New York Adoption Lawyers Rosin Steinhagen Mendel is a law firm dedicated to serving our clients in New York City. >> read
Chicago Work Accident Lawyers at Krol, Bongiorno & Given have been a leader in the field of workers' compensation law. >> read