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May 16, 2023

Municipal – Real Property – Easements – Governmental Immunity – Insurance

Plaintiffs have an easement over a gravel road on a servient tract; the new owner of the servient tract developed that tract, built a road that crosses the gravel road, and offered the road to the defendant-town for dedication. The town has not accepted the dedication, but plaintiffs included the town as a defendant in […]

Feb 17, 2023

Municipal – Tort/Negligence – CGL Insurance – Governmental Immunity

Even though the defendant-city bought commercial general liability insurance, this did not waive the city’s governmental immunity, given that the policy expressly stated that the city’s purchase of insurance was not a waiver of governmental immunity under the General Statutes and that the insurance “applies to the tort liability of an[] insured only to the […]

Feb 17, 2023

Municipal – Appeals – Housing Board – Judicial Review

On 31 October 2019, the respondent-city’s housing appeals board upheld a notice of violation due to overgrowth and debris on petitioner’s property. Petitioner was notified that he had 15 days to appeal, yet he did not file notice of appeal until 21 November 2019. Even if the city failed to provide petitioner with the administrative […]

Nov 18, 2022

Municipal – Zoning – Residential – Agriculture Restrictions – Potbellied Pigs 

Petitioner kept ten potbellied pigs as pets, but the “Limited Agriculture” provision of the respondent-town’s zoning ordinance, which applies to petitioner’s residential property, prohibits the keeping of “livestock such as . . . swine. . . .” Although petitioner may treat her pigs as pets, the ordinance provision does not distinguish between commercial and non-commercial, […]

Nov 16, 2022

Municipal – Zoning – Remote Meetings – State of Emergency 

Plaintiff argues that the defendant-city violated its own City Council Rule 28 by holding an electronic meeting via WebEx to decide a matter that could have been postponed, i.e., the rezoning of property to allow the construction of up to 280 townhouses adjacent to plaintiff’s land. However, the meeting was held during the state of […]

Jun 26, 2018

Insurance – Municipal – Police Department – Wrongful Acts – Same Defendant

Even though the same rape case was the backdrop for the Hickory Police Department’s wrongful acts in 1987-1988 and again from 2003 to 2011, the acts were separate: the earlier wrongful acts involved withholding exculpatory evidence from the district attorney and hence from defense counsel; the later acts were the delays (eight years’ worth) in […]

Apr 9, 2018

Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Jury Trial Right – Respondent’s Request – Municipal

Although section 8(g) of the Asheville Civil Service Law only specifically refers to a petitioner seeking a jury trial, when read as a whole, § 8(g) permits either a petitioner or a respondent to request a jury trial upon appeal from the Asheville Civil Service Board to the superior court. We reverse the decision of […]

Apr 7, 2017

Elections – Municipal – Constitutional – Equal Protection – One Person, One Vote — Redistricting

City of Greensboro v. Guilford County Board of Elections (Lawyers Weekly No. 003-009-17, 27 pp.) (Catherine Eagles, J.) 1:15-cv-00559; M.D.N.C. Holding: Where the General Assembly redistricted the City of Greensboro’s city council seats, and where the only discernible legislative motivation was to increase the weight of votes of Republican-leaning voters and to decrease the weight […]

Apr 7, 2017

Elections – Municipal – Constitutional – Equal Protection – Initiatives & Referendums

City of Greensboro v. Guilford County Board of Elections (Lawyers Weekly No. 003-008-17, 21 pp.) (Catherine Eagles, J.) 115-cv-00559; M.D.N.C. Holding: The General Assembly violated the Equal Protection Clause when it singled out the City of Greensboro and prohibited only Greensboro citizens from participating in municipal initiatives or referendums. The court grants summary judgment for […[...]

Jan 5, 2017

Real Property – Inverse Condemnation – Private Use – Municipal – Constitutional

Wilkie v. City of Boiling Springs Lakes (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-014-17, 18 pp.) (Linda Stephens, J.) Appealed from Brunswick County Superior Court (Ebern Watson III, J.) N.C. App. Holding: G.S. § 40A-51 defines when the remedy of an inverse condemnation action is available against a public condemnor, and § 40A-51 limits its application to action […]

Nov 15, 2016

Real Property – Municipal – Grant to Hospital – Hospital Closure – Civil Rights

Town of Belhaven v. Pantego Creek, LLC (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-381-16, 22 pp.) (Wendy Enochs, J.) Appealed from Beaufort County Superior Court (R. Stuart Albright, J.) N.C. App. Holding: Although the 1948 deed from the plaintiff-town to defendants’ predecessors said the deed was made “in consideration of the benefits to be derived by the citizens […]

Jul 19, 2016

Zoning – Municipal – Civil Practice – Real Property – Public Utilities

Dellinger v. Lincoln County (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-237-16, 22 pp.) (John Tyson, J.) Appealed from Lincoln County Superior Court (Yvonne Evans, J.) N.C. App. Holding: A solar farm developer met its prima facie showing of entitlement to a conditional use permit. A county commissioner’s use of “beyond a doubt” and “failure to meet burden of […]

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