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SALEM, OR-The 2001 Legislature couldn’t fix Measure 7 before the end of the session Saturday, leaving its implementation squarely in the hands of the Oregon Supreme Court. Oregonians approved the property compensation bill last fall, but a Marion County judge ruled in February it was unconstitutional. The Oregon Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in September.

Legislators, Gov. Kitzhaber and public interest groups came close to resolving the issue toward the end of the legislative session, but reportedly couldn’t get over a few hurdles on the final lap. There is some talk of a special session to deal with the issue, but nothing has been decided.

Measure 7 requires state and local governments to compensate landowners for any regulations that restrict the use of their property and reduce its value. Government officials have estimated that Measure 7 compensation could cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

The property rights group Oregonians In Action now likely will watch the Supreme Court’s decision. If it doesn’t go the way OIA likes, its leaders will likely create another ballot measures for next year’s elections.

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