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Thursday, November 21, 2013
A Decade of Harassment: Bottled Water Battle Goes to Hawaii Supreme Court
By Robert Thomas @ 9:35 PM :: 5834 Views :: OHA, Small Business
HAWSCT Oral Arguments: Inferring Assent To Extend Auto-approval Deadlines

by Robert Thomas, Inverse Condemnation, November 21, 2013

We're offline today because we're arguing a case in the Hawaii Supreme Court about automatic approval statutes and zoning law. Here's the summary of the issues, via the Judiciary web site:

This appeal arises out of a decision by the Respondent Planning Commission of the County of Kaua`i (Planning Commission) to deny the Petitioner Kauai Springs, Inc.’s (Kauai Springs) application for three permits related to the continued operation of Kauai Springs’ water bottling facility. The Circuit Court of the Fifth Circuit (circuit court) reversed in part and vacated in part the Planning Commission’s decision and ordered that all three permits be issued to Kauai Springs. The Intermediate Court of Appeals (ICA) subsequently vacated the circuit court’s judgment and remanded the case to the Planning Commission for consideration of whether Kauai Springs could satisfy the relevant permit requirements.

In its application, Kauai Springs argues that the ICA gravely erred by:

1) concluding that Kauai Springs impliedly assented to extend the time frame within which the Planning Commission was required to act on two of the permits; and

2) by remanding the case to the Planning Commission when the Commission already had the opportunity to make the relevant inquiries and denied the permits based on standards that the circuit court and ICA concluded were unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious.

The Planning Commission responds that:

1) Kauai Springs’ conduct during the Commission’s proceedings was reasonably interpreted as manifesting assent to delaying action on the two permits; and

2) the ICA properly remanded the case because the circuit court’s conclusions of law with respect to the Commission’s public trust duties were erroneous.

In case you are interested, here are the cert briefs:

We'll post the court's opinion when issued.

Application for a Writ of Certiorari, Kauai Springs, Inc. v. Planning Comm'n of the Cty of Kauai, No. SCWC-...

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