Posted by: Patricia Salkin | December 15, 2010

Federal District Court Sends Takings Claims Back on Ripeness Grounds

Clark wanted to build a residence on a parcel of land she owned.  Since the parcel was located in a wetlands area, she was required to submit a request for a Natural Resources Special Permit.  Her permit application was denied, and she filed a complaint first in State court, alleging the Town’s action constituted a taking that was in violation of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution and that she owed damages.  The Town then timely removed the action to federal court because of the constitutional claims.  Clark’s attorneys contacted the Town to let the Town know that under Williamson County, 43 U.S. 172 (1985), they had to exhaust their state remedies first. Clark’s attorneys asked the Town to agree to a voluntary remand, which was rejected.

The District Court agreed with Clark that the federal claims were not ripe for review since the Cark must first seek just compensation through available state procedures. Therefore, the court lacked jurisdiction. The case was remanded to the state court.

Clark v. Town of East Hampton, 2010 WL 4789417 (E.D.N.Y. Nov. 16, 2010)

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