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Delta Levees - Tort Immunity vs. Takings Liability

30 Pages Posted: 3 Oct 2007  

Michael Percy

Santa Clara University


This Article examines the conflicting public policy arguments surrounding the vulnerable state of California's Delta levee system. While discussing the structural, financial, and political obstacles to rebuilding the Delta levee system, the Article focuses on the juxtaposition of the judicial evolution of liability under California's takings clause and the California Department of Water Resources proposals to increase state immunity as it relates to flood protection work. California's takings clause is modeled after the U.S. Constitution and its existing statutory tort immunity for failure of flood control projects is modeled after the Federal Flood Control Act of 1928. The argument presented in this Article may have persuasive force in other states that have similar legal foundations.

Keywords: Law, Levees, Liability, Takings, California

JEL Classification: H23, H82, K11, K13, K32, K40, K41, K49

Suggested Citation

Percy, Michael, Delta Levees - Tort Immunity vs. Takings Liability. Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Journal, Vol. 42, No. 4, 2007. Available at SSRN:

Michael J. Percy (Contact Author)

Santa Clara University ( email )

500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053
United States

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