Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Environmental Driven Solutions, LLC v. Dunn County

Supreme Court of North Dakota

March 7, 2017

Environmental Driven Solutions, LLC, Plaintiff and Appellee
v.
Dunn County, a North Dakota Municipality, Defendant and Appellant
v.
North Dakota Industrial Commission, Intervenor and Appellee

         Appeal from the District Court of Dunn County, Southwest Judicial District, the Honorable Dann Edward Greenwood, Judge.

         AFFIRMED.

          Zachary E. Pelham (argued) and Meredith L. Vukelic (on brief), for plaintiff and appellee.

          Ariston E. Johnson, Assistant State's Attorney, for defendant and appellant. Hope L. Hogan, Office of the Attorney General, for intervenor and appellee.

          Aaron G. Birst, and Karen S. Prout, Assistant State's Attorney, Stephanie E. Dassinger, John W. Morrison Jr.,

          CROTHERS, JUSTICE.

         [¶ 1] Dunn County appeals from a judgment declaring the Industrial Commission has exclusive jurisdiction to determine the location of oil and gas waste treating plants. We affirm, concluding the County lacks the power to veto the Commission's approval of the location for an oil and gas waste treating plant.

         I

         [¶ 2] In August 2013 Environmental Driven Solutions, LLC ("EDS") received a permit from the Commission for a waste oil treating plant in Dunn County. The permit allowed EDS "to recycle and treat waste crude oil obtained from drilling operations, pit oil, swab oil, acid oil, tank bottoms, oil spills, pipeline breaks, skim oil from saltwater disposal tanks, and other waste crude oil related to oil and gas exploration and production." The permit also notes "treating plants must comply with all applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations." Notice of the hearing on EDS's application was published in the Bismarck Tribune and in a Dunn County newspaper. Some area landowners objected in writing to EDS's application, but representatives of the County did not object or appear at the hearing.

         [¶ 3] After EDS began constructing the treating plant, the County issued notices of "violation and order to abate, " claiming the treating plant could not be constructed on the site because the property was zoned "Rural Preservation, " and "Salt Water Storage Tank & similar facilities" were not an "allowed use." EDS applied to the County to rezone the property, but the County denied the application because its Land Development Code requires 120 acres to rezone and EDS's property comprised only 118.58 acres. EDS then applied for a conditional use permit, but the County denied the application.

         [¶ 4] EDS brought this action against the County seeking a declaratory judgment that the Commission, rather than the County, had jurisdiction to determine the siting of its treating plant. The Commission was allowed to intervene in the proceedings. The district court granted summary judgment, concluding the Commission had exclusive jurisdiction to determine the location of the oil and gas waste treating plant and the County's zoning ordinances were preempted by state law.

         II

         [¶ 5] The County argues the district court erred because the Commission does not have the power to permit oil waste treating facilities that are barred by a county's "properly-enacted zoning ordinance and land use comprehensive plan."

         [¶ 6] We review summary judgments in declaratory judgment actions under the same standard as other cases. See Ramsey Cty. Farm Bureau v. Ramsey Cty., 2008 ND 175, ¶ 5, 755 N.W.2d 920. In State ex rel. Stenehjem v. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.