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Governor starts property rights campaign
Herald and News 7/13/07

   PORTLAND (AP) — Gov. Ted Kulongoski kicked off a campaign Thursday for a November ballot measure that would curb development allowed under a property compensation law voters approved in 2004.
   Ballot Measure 49 is a rewrite of the law known as Measure 37 and would allow some property owners to build up to three homes but curb larger subdivisions and industrial development.
   “We are not seeking to repeal Measure 37. We are working to fix Measure 37,” said Kulongoski. “We need to protect our valuable farm, forest and water resources that are part of what makes Oregon so unique.”
   Under Measure 37, government officials must compensate property owners if land-use regulations — such as zoning ordinances introduced after the property owner bought the land — reduces its value, or allow them to develop.
   Measure 37 was passed because of many Oregonians felt existing land-use laws restricted landowners rights. But the property compensation law has resulted in more than 150 lawsuits, and more than $15 billion in claims against governments for compensation.
   Opponents of Measure 49 say the proposal guts the original law and runs counter to what voters intended when they approved the property compensation measure three years ago.
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