Altamont Homeowners Association v. City of Happy Valley

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Municipal Law
  • Date Filed: 03-11-2016
  • Case #: 2015-070
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Opinion by Ryan
  • Full Text Opinion

Notwithstanding Clackamas County's status as a party to the Urban Growth Management Agreement (UGMA) between Oregon City and the county, the county's status as a party to the UGMA does not automatically satisfy the statutory obligation under ORS 222.125 that the city obtain written consent from the county before annexing county property.

Altamont Homeowners’ Association, Inc. (Altamont) appealed a city ordinance that annexed a portion of SE Johnson Creek Boulevard (Johnson Creek) and a vacant 7.04-acre parcel owned by Prestige Care, Inc. (Prestige), located in the Altamont planned unit development, and applied city plan and zoning designations to the vacant parcel. Prestige applied to the city for annexation of its parcel, and a zone change from the county’s Low Density Residential (R-15) designation to the city’s Mixed Use Commercial (MUC) designation to develop a senior care facility on the parcel. Following two local hearings, the city approved Prestige’s applications for annexation and the zone change, and adopted the challenged ordinance. Altamont appealed to LUBA.
Altamont’s two assignments of error challenged: (1) the adequacy of the city’s findings adopted in support of the ordinance, as well as the city’s failure to apply city plan and zoning to the annexed portion of Johnson Creek and failure to zone Prestige’s parcel with a city zone corresponding to the county’s R-15 zone; and, (2) the city’s failure to follow statutory and Happy Valley Land Development Code (LDC) procedures applicable to the annexation process, such that the failure amounted to procedural error. LUBA denied both subassignments of error under Altamont’s first assignment of error, holding that Altamont’s failure to point to any specific, allegedly inadequate findings provided no basis for reversal or remand, and “[a]bsent any acknowledgement of or challenge to” the city’s interpretation of the LDC similarly provided no basis for reversal or remand. LUBA sustained Altamont’s second assignment of error, holding that the city was required to obtain written consent from Clackamas County, the owner of the portion of Johnson Creek to be annexed. REMANDED.