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Judges rule on Clark County surveyor's suit

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The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for the former Clark County surveyor in his request that he should have been involved in a project involving Lancassange Creek. But the judges reversed summary judgment for the surveyor regarding whether he should have been involved in a project in a subdivision.

Robert Isgrigg, while Clark County surveyor, filed a complaint for declaratory judgment and permanent injunction against the Clark County Board of Commissioners and Clark County Drainage Board, claiming the boards didn’t follow Indiana Code with regards to his involvement in projects. He claimed that he should have been involved in a project in the Sunset Hills subdivision to fix surface water collecting onto the subject properties. Isgrigg argued that the improvements in Sunset Hill constituted a regulated drain under Indiana code, so he should have been involved. The drainage board had worked with Brian Dixon, a licensed engineer, regarding the surface water problems.

In Clark County Drainage Board and Clark County Board of Commissioners v. Robert Isgrigg, No. 10A05-1102-PL-68, the appellate court found there to be no genuine issues of material fact that there were any regulated drains in the subdivision, as is required to trigger the use of the county surveyor. There were no open channels in the subdivision either before or after the drainage board’s involvement in the project, Judge Edward Najam wrote.

But the COA did affirm summary judgment for Isgrigg in his complaint regarding whether the drainage board had authority to remove an obstruction in the Lancassange Creek project. On appeal, the drainage board conceded that the work should have been administered in accordance with Indiana Code 36-9-27.4, which should have included the participation of the county surveyor.

Because the appellate court held that each party was entitled to a partial grant of summary judgment, it vacated the award of costs to Isgrigg and ordered each party to pay their own costs.

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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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