Oregon Land Use - Another Big Look

Measure 49, which was touted by most local Worldchanging types as a vital, if flawed, correction to the disastrous Measure 37, passed by a comfortable margin in the last election - reaffirming Oregon's commitment to farm and wilderness conservation through land-use planning and urban growth boundaries.

The Oregonion's Eric Mortenson writes:

Measure 37 gave property owners the right to seek compensation or a waiver from land-use rules if regulations imposed after they bought their land reduced its value and restricted its use. A flood of 7,500 claims, many for large subdivisions on farm and forest land, alarmed conservationists, farm groups and Democratic legislators.

That ultimately resulted in the backlash of Measure 49, which allows claimants to build a few homes but prohibits commercial and industrial development and large subdivisions.

With the land-use planning system in a state of confusion, disarray, and increasingly subject to the whims of ballot measures which are often little or misunderstood by voters, pressure is mounting to revive the The Oregon Task Force on Land Use Planning (also known as the Big Look Task Force), which was "charged with conducting a comprehensive review of the Oregon Statewide Planning Program and make recommendations for any needed changes to land-use policy to the 2009 Legislature."

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