Earlier this year the SC Supreme Court issue a ruling that sent shock waves through the development community. The ruling, in the SC League of Women Voters vs. Smith Land Company, nullified case law practice for many years by:
1. Zero Tolerance: the court ruled that any discharge into the environment must be permitted – this case involved filing part of .19 acre on a .33 acre lot that was not required by state or federal law to have a permit.
2. Encourages Lawsuits: the court also ruled that anyone could have “standing” in a case, and they did not have to be directly impacted by the issue. In the past the individual filing the lawsuit had to be directly impacted to file the case. This now opens the door for a flood of litigation from every activist group in state.
If this ruling is allowed to stand, economic development in this state could come to a grinding halt as anti-economic development groups sue every business that wants to come to the state, and companies will locate in less litigious states.