Washington COA Restores Yakama Nation Suit against County over Land Use Ordinance

Here are the materials in Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation v. Okanogan County (Wash. Ct. App.):

371298_unpublished opinion

Yakama Brief

County Brief


An excerpt:

This appeal concerns one of endless broken promises by American government authorities toward Native Americans. The breach of an agreement in this instance also encompasses a violation of a court order.
The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation (Yakama Nation) agreed to dismiss a lawsuit against Okanogan County, and, in return, the county agreed to adopt, by December 31, 2018, a new comprehensive plan and zoning ordinance that hopefully addressed the concerns the Nation had about the county’s current plan and ordinance. The superior court signed an order of dismissal without prejudice of the lawsuit, which order incorporated the many promises of the parties. When Okanogan County failed to adopt a new plan and ordinance by December 31, 2018 and thereby violated the court order, the Yakama Nation moved to vacate the order of dismissal. The superior court denied the motion to vacate on the alternative grounds that it lacked authority to vacate an order of dismissal without prejudice and that the Nation had no sustainable cause of action against the county for breaching its promises or violating the court order. Because the order of dismissal without prejudice imposed numerous obligations on Okanogan County, some of which it has disobeyed, we rule that the motion to vacate should have been granted. We thus reverse the superior court.