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Legal Primer for Local Government

Legal Primer for Local Government

VARD partnered with Givens Pursley LLP, a major Idaho law firm with vast expertise in the representing land developers throughout the state, to produce a legal primer for our Planning & Zoning Commission and our Board of County Commissioners explaining when and how local government can modify or reject development proposals in a legally defensible manner. 

Typically, the safest route for local governments to follow when presented with a development proposal is to simply approve the plan.  Between the constant drive for progress and the general presumption that people ought to do as they wish with their land, there are few direct consequences for local officials who approve subdivision plans while any denial can be assumed to result in a lawsuit. Given that dynamic, when we ask our leaders to modify or deny a development proposal we are also asking those people to take on a certain amount of exposure.  

The purpose of the primer is to help clarify the role of local decisionmakers in the development process and empower local government officials to make sound and defensible decisions on projects that will impact our local community for generations to come.  VARD hopes that local governments in Teton County as well as others areas across the country will be able to look to the primer as a resource to guide them through the difficult process of determining when a proposal must be approved with conditions or denied in its entirety.  By using the primer local officials can minimize their risk of facing a successful challenge to any modification or denial of a development proposal.  

Action Needed

Click here to read the cover letter introducing the Primer

Click here to read the full text of the Primer

Click here to read Exhibit A

Click here to read Exhibit B

Click here to read Exhibit C

Click here to read Exhibit D

Click here to read Exhibit E


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