Landwatch Lane County v Lane County

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Municipal Law
  • Date Filed: 06-29-2017
  • Case #: 2016-124
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Opinion by Bassham
  • Full Text Opinion

Lane County Code 13.020 authorizes the county to make a determination that a unit of land was created in conformance with the Lane Code and other applicable law.

This appeal concerns the legal significance of a 1985 quitclaim deed which conveyed the western half of a dry meander channel of the Willamette River to the Zumwalts, intervenor-respondents’ predecessors-in-interest. In 1985, the state quitclaimed its interest in the western portion of the meander channel to the Zumwalts, thus expanding their property to include the new area. Following the quitclaim deed, the county tax assessor assigned a separate tax lot number (2201) to the area of land quitclaimed to the Zumwalts. Two lots (lots one and three) are disputed by petitioner. In 2016, intervenors applied to the county to verify lots one and three as legal lots, pursuant to Lane County Code (LC) 13.020. The county planning director approved the application. Petitioner appealed, and the county hearings official affirmed the decision, declaring that the 1985 quitclaim deed had the effect of expanding the property to include tax parcel 2201. This appeal followed a final decision by the county board of commissioners.

On the second and third sub-assignments of error, petitioner argues that the legal effect of the 1985 deed to the Zumwalts was to illegally create two new discrete parcels of land. In the alternative, petitioner claims that if the 1985 deed effected a property line adjustment, as a matter of law, the scope of the legal lot for purposes of LC 13.020 cannot include the area of land added to a lawfully created parcel under a property line adjustment such as this. The county argued that the deed did not create a new parcel, but rather reduced an existing parcel owned by the state to nothing, which was common for deeds of this era. Because petitioner failed to identify any authority for their argument, LUBA finds no basis for reversal or remand. AFFIRMED.