Curry County faces glut of Measure 37 claims

March 02, 2007 12:00 am

Wescom Wire Service

GOLD BEACH – The Curry County Board of Commissioners plans to make a dent in the backlog of Measure 37 claims when the board is scheduled to hear 20 of those claims on March 13, 14 and 16. But it's only a dent.

"We have 79 to process," Curry County Planning Director David Pratt said this week.

In all, Curry County saw 114 such claims over the two-year period they could be filed. Most of them came in during the last few days of filing, with 74 filed between Nov. 1 and Dec. 4.

Measure 37 requires governments to either pay compensation or waive land use rules on landowners who have had property since before restricting regulations came into effect.

Curry County has been waiving land use rules because the county can't afford to pay claims.

"There were quite a few around the 29th, 30th, 1st and 2nd and one on Dec. 4," Pratt said. "They made a mad rush to get them in."

The Measure 37 law, originally passed by wide margins of voters in Oregon and Curry County in 2004, was challenged in court and initially declared unconstitutional by Judge Mary James of Marion County. But the Oregon Supreme Court reversed that decision a year ago.