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State Constitutional Prohibitions On Special Laws , Justin R. Long Jan 2012

State Constitutional Prohibitions On Special Laws , Justin R. Long

Cleveland State Law Review

Since the nineteenth century, most states have had constitutional clauses prohibiting “special laws.” These clauses were ratified to protect the people of each state from domination by narrow economic elites, who would use their economic power to win grants of privilege from the state legislatures. To fight the corrupt favors garnered by private interests in this way, state constitutional drafters wrote clauses requiring their legislatures to pass only “general laws” that would apply equally to all members of the regulated class. For a brief period, these clauses were enforced in the courts—but more to protect economic elites than the democratic …


The Ohio Supreme Court's Perverse Stance On Development Impact Fees And What To Do About It, Alan C. Weinstein Jan 2012

The Ohio Supreme Court's Perverse Stance On Development Impact Fees And What To Do About It, Alan C. Weinstein

Cleveland State Law Review

Ohio is among the twenty-two states that have no enabling legislation for development impact fees. But in a 2000 ruling, Homebuilders Association of Dayton and the Miami Valley v. City of Beavercreek, a divided Ohio Supreme Court ruled that municipalities could lawfully enact impact fees under their police and “home rule” powers, provided that the fees could pass constitutional muster under a “dual rational nexus test.” On May 31, 2012, however, the court ruled in Drees Company v. Hamilton Township, that a development impact fee enacted by an Ohio township with “limited home rule” powers was an unconstitutional tax. The …