Real Estate

Inclusionary Zoning as a Taking: A Critical Look at its Ability to Provide Affordable Housing

CALIFORNIA’S HEALTH AND SAFETY CODE SECTION 50003.3 STATES THAT “The Legislature finds and declares that . . . there exists within the urban and rural areas of the state a serious shortage of decent, safe, and sanitary housing which persons and families of low or moderate income . . . can afford. This situation creates an absolute present and future shortage of supply in relation to demand . . . and . . .by reason of its scarcity which tends to decrease the relative affordability of the state’s housing supply for all its residents.”1 The lack of affordable housing in California, acknowledged and embodied in the statute in the late 1970s, has become even more severe. As noted in a report prepared by The Legislative Analyst Office (“LAO”), beginning around 1970, a noticeable gap between the housing prices in California and the prices in the rest of the country became apparent.2 Specifically, the report found that between 1970 and 1980, California’s home prices jumped from 30% above U.S. levels to more than 80%, and that today, the price of a home in California is about “two-and-a-half times the average national home price.”3

Federal Government

Through-Running and Regional Transit in New York: An Analysis of Legal Structures and Approaches

ON AN AVERAGE WEEKDAY IN NEW YORK CITY, APPROXIMATELY 114,000 LONG ISLAND RAIL ROAD (“LIRR”) customers stream into Pennsylvania Station (“Penn Station”) on their way to work or another destination.1 Another 87,000 come into Penn Station via New Jersey Transit (“NJ Transit”).2 But what happens next? Many casual riders would be surprised to learn that due to a lack of underground capacity in Manhattan, NJ Transit trains are then carefully shuttled over to Sunnyside Yards in Queens, where they can be stored, serviced, and prepared for the reverse commute. Meanwhile, LIRR trains are routed to Hudson Yards in the far West Side of Manhattan for a similar procedure.


In Purgatory: The Unconstitutionality of the Kansas Voting System

IN SEPTEMBER 2015, 36,674 KANSANS WERE IN “VOTER PURGATORY.”1 Their right to vote had been suspended because they had difficulty providing all the documentation required by the voter registration system of Republican Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.2 After filling out the registration form, Kansans are put on a waiting list until their application is approved by a county election officer or the Secretary of State’s office, but until then, they cannot vote and they remain in what has been called voter purgatory.3 For proof-of-citizenship, federal law requires only that voter registrants check a box indicating that they are U.S. citizens, subject to charges of perjury.4

Diversity & Inclusion

The Homeschooled Child’s Right to Attend Public School: Is Judicial Bypass a Solution?

The notion that an educated populace is necessary to maintain a well-functioning democracy is largely accepted as true. When a system of government vests power in its people, it follows that those people must be able to understand and interact with that system in order for it to have any efficacy. Therefore, our democracy’s prerequisite education means nothing without ensuring the adequacy of that education, begging questions of proper method, acceptable content, and the use of regulatory oversight. Likewise, when there is a failure to provide adequate education, the question turns to one of remedy.

Other 2017 Issues

Find all quarterly issues of Urban Lawyer from 2017.