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Environmental Law & Policy Center, et al. v. N.D. Public Svc. Commission, et al. 2020 ND 192
Docket No.: 20190220
Filing Date: 9/15/2020
Case Type: ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDING
Author: Tufte, Jerod E.

Highlight: The Administrative Agencies Practice Act governs an appeal from a decision of the Public Service Commission.

The Public Service Commission’s authority to regulate is limited to that authority provided to it by the legislature.

For an administrative agency, the term “jurisdiction” has three components: (1) personal jurisdiction, referring to the agency’s authority over the parties and intervenors involved in the proceedings; (2) subject matter jurisdiction, referring to the agency’s power to hear and determine the causes of a general class of cases to which a particular case belongs; and (3) the agency’s scope of authority under statute.

The Commission’s regulatory authority is limited to projects that meet the definition of “gas or liquid energy conversion facility” found in N.D.C.C. § 49-22.1-01(6). A refinery not designed for or capable of refining 50,000 bpd is not a “gas or liquid energy conversion facility” as that term is defined. A project proponent may avoid the time and expense of the Commission’s regulatory review that comes with a larger project by deciding to reduce the scale of a project to a size just below the regulatory threshold.

State v. Silk 2020 ND 191
Docket No.: 20200035
Filing Date: 9/15/2020
Case Type: DRUGS/CONTRABAND
Author: Per Curiam

Highlight: Order revoking defendant’s probation and amended criminal judgment is summarily affirmed under N.D.R.App.P. 35.1(a)(4) and (7).

Oversen, et al. v. Jaeger 2020 ND 190
Docket No.: 20200234
Filing Date: 9/4/2020
Case Type: WRIT OF MANDAMUS (Civil)
Author: Per Curiam

Highlight: The secretary of state does not have a duty to certify a new nomination and place the new nominee’s name on the general election ballot as a candidate for a statewide executive branch office when a vacancy on the ballot occurs after the primary election, if the vacancy did not occur as a result of one of the conditions listed in N.D.C.C. § 16.1-11-18(6).

Estate of Grenz 2020 ND 189
Docket No.: 20190363
Filing Date: 8/31/2020
Case Type: PROBATE - WILLS - TRUSTS
Author: Tufte, Jerod E.

Highlight: A district court’s decision to invalidate a portion of a decedent’s will based on undue influence and to give effect to a portion of a contingent distribution clause is affirmed.

City of West Fargo v. Olson, et al. 2020 ND 188
Docket No.: 20200183
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: WRIT OF SUPERVISION (Crim.)
Author: Jensen, Jon J.

Highlight: The Supreme Court exercises supervisory jurisdiction only in extraordinary cases to rectify errors and prevent injustice when no adequate alternative remedy exists.

Because the individual who initially inspected and reviewed the installation of the Intoxilyzer 8000 testing device did not make any testimonial statements under the Confrontation Clause or Rule 707 of the North Dakota Rules of Evidence, the City of West Fargo is not required to produce her at trial.

Muhlbradt, et al. v. Pederson, et al. 2020 ND 187
Docket No.: 20190327
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: OIL, GAS AND MINERALS
Author: McEvers, Lisa K. Fair

Highlight: Deeds are construed in the same manner as contracts with the primary purpose to ascertain and effectuate the parties’ or grantor’s intent.

Whether a deed is ambiguous is a question of law, which is fully reviewable on appeal.

Kvande v. Thorson 2020 ND 186
Docket No.: 20190356
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: REAL PROPERTY
Author: McEvers, Lisa K. Fair

Highlight: Laches is the delay in enforcing a person’s rights that disadvantages another, and a party asserting laches must prove he was so prejudiced during the delay that he cannot be restored to status quo.

Equitable estoppel cannot be used to create an enforceable agreement between the parties.

City of Glen Ullin, et al. v. Schirado, et al. 2020 ND 185
Docket No.: 20200075
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: TORTS (NEGLIGENCE, LIAB., NUIS.)
Author: Tufte, Jerod E.

Highlight: A district court’s application of res judicata to claims concerning rights to real property is partially affirmed and partially reversed.

Koffler v. Koffler 2020 ND 184
Docket No.: 20190378
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: CHILD CUST & SUPPORT (Div.\Other)
Author: Tufte, Jerod E.

Highlight: A child support obligor’s self-induced reduction in income generally does not constitute a material change in circumstances warranting a modification of a child support obligation.

State v. M.J.W. 2020 ND 183
Docket No.: 20200008
Filing Date: 8/27/2020
Case Type: DRUGS/CONTRABAND
Author: Tufte, Jerod E.

Highlight: Section 12-60.1-02(1)(a), N.D.C.C., authorizes an individual to petition the district court to seal a criminal record only when the individual had not been charged with a new crime for at least three years from the date of release from incarceration, parole, or probation.

A district court errs when it grants a petition not authorized by statute.

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