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Monday, June 17, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Calif. Cabin Owner Loses Takings Case Against BLM

CN) - The Court of Federal Claims dismissed the takings claim of a California property owner whose cabins were mistakenly enrolled in the Bureau of Land Management's Adopt-A-Cabin program.

When Louise Hall sold her land to Glenn Gould, neither of them knew that the BLM had taken over the property as a part of its Adopt-a-Cabin program, a 1989 initiative to repair historic cabins once used by ranchers and miners.

The BLM had mistakenly included the land with other property that was forfeited by Hall for failure to pay maintenance fees. BLM volunteers took Hall's personal mining equipment and used it for mining activities. One volunteer even shot at Hall.

Hall and Gould sued the BLM for taking their land without due process, seeking $1.2 million in damages.

Judge Braden ruled that Hall and Grant cannot sue in federal claims court because private citizens took their equipment.

Also, the plaintiffs "have failed to establish a property interest in the cabin or other structures on the land, since at least 1997, because of non-compliance with BLM regulations," Braden wrote.

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