Rogue Advocates v. Board of Commissioners of Jackson County

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Land Use
  • Date Filed: 04-20-2016
  • Case #: A158485
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Devore, J. for the Court; Duncan, P.J.; & Flynn, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

A party may not ask a circuit court to disrupt the land use decisional process by asking the court to make a land use decision under the pretext of a circuit court enforcement proceeding.

Plaintiff appealed a general judgment that dismissed their four claims against Defendants for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. A party may not raise arguments about a land use issue in a circuit court if those same arguments were considered and rejected by the Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA). ORS 197.825 gives LUBA exclusive jurisdiction to review any land use decision or a local government, special district, or a state agency decision. A party may not ask a circuit court to disrupt the land use decisional process by asking the court to make a land use decision under the pretext of a circuit court enforcement proceeding. As long as the land use issues being brought before the circuit court are being addressed by the land use decisional process, the circuit court lacks jurisdiction to consider them. The circuit court lacked subject matter jurisdiction because various land use applications were still pending when Plaintiffs brought the enforcement action in circuit court. The circuit court does not have jurisdiction over a declaratory claim if a related land use decisional process is still in progress and if the relief that the plaintiff has requested would require the circuit court to decide an issue that could be decided through the land use process. Affirmed.

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