Prof. Ashira Ostrow’s ‘Judicial Review of Local Land Use Decisions: Lessons from RLUIPA’ Cited by Federal District Court

Professor Ashira Ostrow’s article, JUDICIAL REVIEW OF LOCAL LAND USE DECISIONS: LESSONS FROM RLUIPA, 31 Harv. J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 717 (2008) was recently cited by a federal district court. See, United States v. Boender, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 15716 (N.D. Ill. Feb. 23, 2010).

Calvin Boender, a real estate developer, was accused of bribing a city alderman (zoning official) as part of a scheme to have property rezoned. Several other alderman were subpoenaed to provide testimony on the zoning decision. The alderman asked the Court to bar inquiry into the question of why they voted for the rezoning (and other legislative matters) at trial, should they be called to testify.

The Court refused to bar inquiry into this matter, noting:

Ashira Pelman Ostrow, Judicial Review of Local Land Use Decisions: Lessons from RLUIPA, 31 HARV. J. L. & PUB. POL’Y 717, 727 (2008) (arguing against deferential judicial review of zoning decisions, in contrast to most economic regulation, in part because a combination of structural [*24] factors “leaves ample room for inconsistency and corruption in the zoning process”).