Property and Business Rights

Cincinnati Public Schools v. Conners successfully challenged deed restrictions restraining charter and private schools. Cincinnati Public Schools attempted to prohibit charter or private schools from using any school buildings that CPS previously owned.


Merrill v. State of Ohio Department of Natural Resources was an important victory for property rights against the “public trust doctrine.” The Attorney General and environmental interest groups had claimed that because the State owns the waters of Lake Erie, it also owns the beaches.


Moto Verde and the Village of Fairfax successfully challenged zoning regulations applied to destroy a scooter business. The 1851 Center advised the Village of Fairfax, an enclave of Cincinnati, that it had violated the constitutional rights of Moto Verde. Fairfax reconsidered and today Moto Verde is open for business.


Pour House, Inc. v. Ohio Department of Health successfully challenged unreasonable fines related to the smoking ban. The enforcement regime essentially required small businesses to enforce the state smoking ban for the state. It’s the government’s law and the state should enforce its own laws.


Manna Storehouse v. Ohio Department of Agriculture challenged unreasonable licensing laws. Manna Storehouse and its owners, the Stowers family, were the victims of an armed raid conducted by the Ohio Department of Agriculture and the Lorain County Health Department.


Jackson v. Bartec challenged the application of Ohio’s smoking ban to bars and taverns. The Center argued that the smoking ban unconstitutionally deprives business owners of fundamental property rights. The 1851 Center represented Zeno’s Victorian Village, a family owned tavern in Columbus, Ohio.