COA reverses annexation decision

Jennifer Nelson
January 1, 2007
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The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's decision in a northern Indiana annexation case, citing a recent ruling on the subject from the Indiana Supreme Court.

In the case In the Matter of the Annexation Proposed by Ordinance No. 2004-11-38, et al. v. Chris Fetcko, et al., 45A03-0611-CV-549, the city of Crown Point appealed the trial court's order granting the motion for involuntary dismissal filed by Fetcko and other remonstrators to a city ordinance annexing certain land.

Crown Point adopted a fiscal plan for annexing real estate known as Liberty Park, Abandoned Railroad, and American Legion. In April 2005, the city annexed Liberty Park. When the trial court held a hearing on the petition filed by the remonstrators against the annexation, the trial court granted the remonstrators motion for involuntary dismissal pursuant to trial rule 41(B). The trial court ruled that the city did not meet the requirements under Indiana Code 36-4-3-13(d)(2), which states a fiscal plan must show how planned services to the area annexed will be financed and "must explain how specific and detailed expenses will be funded and must indicate the taxes, grants, and other funding to be used." The city's plan showed there would be a five-year deficit in providing services to the annexed territory, but any shortfalls would be made up from the city's general fund.

The city appealed, arguing that the way the trial court interpreted Indiana Code section 36-4-3-13(d)(2) would require "an annexing municipality to include information in its fiscal plan beyond the scope required by the legislature in its statute."

The Court of Appeals, using the recent Supreme Court decision in City of Carmel v. Annexation Terr. Landowners, 868 N.E.2d 793, 797 (Ind. 2007), reversed the trial court ruling. Just like the fiscal plan in the City of Carmel case, Crown Point's plan demonstrated that revenue from the annexation territory will be a significant source of revenue for funding services to the annexed territory and the initial deficit from annexation will be covered by the city's general fund.

Following the guidance from the Supreme Court in City of Carmel, the Court of Appeals ruled Crown Point's plan is sufficiently specific regarding funding sources and reversed and remanded for further proceedings.

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  1. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  2. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  3. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise

  4. I have a degree at law, recent MS in regulatory studies. Licensed in KS, admitted b4 S& 7th circuit, but not to Indiana bar due to political correctness. Blacklisted, nearly unemployable due to hostile state action. Big Idea: Headwinds can overcome, esp for those not within the contours of the bell curve, the Lego Movie happiness set forth above. That said, even without the blacklisting for holding ideas unacceptable to the Glorious State, I think the idea presented above that a law degree open many vistas other than being a galley slave to elitist lawyers is pretty much laughable. (Did the law professors of Indiana pay for this to be published?)

  5. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.