Property Commodification as a Municipal Strategy, Property Tax Reform as an Imperative

Property Commodification as a Municipal Strategy, Property Tax Reform as an Imperative

Hyper-commodified property – imbued with value by public infrastructure, developed at its “highest and best use” from an income generation perspective, and then taxed – is in theory a boon for municipal governments. In reality, urban fiscal and land use policies become caught up in cycles of price appreciation and rent-seeking. To reverse this spiral, municipal leaders must both reform currently regressive property taxation regimes and implement tax policies that expressly curb rent-seeking and speculation.

How Civil Probation is Rewriting Eviction Law

How Civil Probation is Rewriting Eviction Law

When tenants head to eviction court, they often sign settlements that allow them to remain in their home so long as they abide by certain conditions. If they violate any of the conditions, they can be evicted through an expedited, alternative legal process, in which they have few procedural or substantive rights. This system of “civil probation,” overlooked in both public and scholarly debate, is effectively rewriting eviction law in favor of landlords.

Collateral Cities

Collateral Cities

Under financialized capitalism, corporate investors value homes not solely or primarily for rental income, or even as assets that can be bought and sold—but rather because they serve as collateral. Three episodes of institutional change in housing markets underscore the importance of not only decommodifying land and housing, but decollateralizing it.

Bankruptcy as Social Safety Net

Bankruptcy as Social Safety Net

By paying greater attention to who files bankruptcy, we can learn a great deal about the social and economic disparities that plague our society. By reforming and expanding access to bankruptcy, we can chip away at some of these disparities.

The Paradox of Property in the American Rule of Law

The Paradox of Property in the American Rule of Law

In the United States, the rule of law has always had property rights as its lodestar, with private property serving as the central legal interest that requires protection. Attending to our history reveals the dangers and paradoxical nature of this property-first conception of the rule of law.

Seven Reactions to the Eviction Moratorium Decision

Seven Reactions to the Eviction Moratorium Decision

Last week, the Supreme Court struck down the Biden Administration’s most recent moratorium on evictions. The decision, along with an anemic federal rental assistance effort, has put millions of people at risk of being removed from their homes. To offer our readers different ways into this important ruling, we asked Amy Kapczynski, Nikolas Bowie, Tara…

Jewishness as Property under Israeli Law

Jewishness as Property under Israeli Law

Understanding the law’s role in the project of Israeli colonization requires examining how distinct legal frameworks applied across a legally fragmented space can nevertheless share a common defining logic. One manifestation of this shared logic becomes evident by scrutinizing claims to land adjudicated by Israeli courts: Israeli state agencies and Jewish settler groups are treated as presumptively proper claimants of property while non-Jewish Palestinians are treated, at best, as dwellers who are not entitled to claim property but merely inhabit the land at the sufferance of Israeli authorities.