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Property-rights activists have backed two basic sorts of legislation to protect landowners from regulatory burdens. By the end of 1995, fourteen States had adopted the first type-a "takings assessment statute." An assessment statute requires a regulatory agency considering an action to prepare a written evaluation both of the action's takings implications, and also of alternative actions that would mitigate takings problems. The second type-a "compensation statute"-articulates a test for identifying a regulatory taking, sets levels of compensation, and provides procedures for the settlement of claims. In 1995, Florida and Texas, two of the nation's four most populous States, joined the short list of jurisdictions with compensation statutes. The federal government also has been stirring. A 1988 Reagan Administration executive order requires federal agencies to conduct takings assessments. In addition, the House passed a narrow compensation statute in March 1995, and the Senate Judiciary Committee approved more far-reaching takings legislation in December 1995. The regulatory-takings issue has never been more legislatively salient.

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