Federal Court Grants Summary Judgment to US on Whistleblower Claims from Former Sauk-Siuattle Employee

Here are the materials in the looooong-running Dahlstrom v. United States (W.D. Wash.) matter:

98 US MSJ

103 Response

107 Reply

116 DCT Order Granting 98

Prior materials in this case here. Materials in the related case against the tribe, here.

Federal Court Dismisses False Claims Act Complaint against Sauk-Suiattle Employees, Awards Attorney Fees

Here are the materials in Dahlstrom v. Sauk-Suiattle Tribe (W.D. Wash.):

64 Individual Defendants MSJ

72 Response

75 Reply

79 DCT Order

Order dismissing same claims against the tribe is here.

Materials in related claims against US, here.

Federal Court Rejects Last Remaining Claims in Dahlstrom v US [wrongful discharge from Sauk-Siuattle]

Here are the materials in Dahlstrom v. United States (W.D. Wash.):

82 Individual Defs Motion for Summary Judgment

86 Response

89 Reply

92 DCT Order

Prior posts here.

Tenth Circuit Decides Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town v. United States

Here is the opinion in Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town v. United States.

Briefs here.

Federal Court Dismisses All But One Claim in Long-running Dahlstrom v. United States [wrongful discharge from Sauk-Siuattle]

Here are the materials in Dahlstrom v. United States (W.D. Wash.):

69 us motion to dismiss

73 opposition

75 reply

77 dct order dismissing second amended complaint

 

 

Federal Dismisses Alleged Whistleblower Complaint against US re: Former Sauk-Suiattle Employee, Allows 30 Days to Refile on Free Speech Claims

Here are the materials in Dahlstrom v. United States (W.D. Wash.):

38 US Motion to Dismiss

48 Response

49 US Reply

62 DCT Order

Prior post here.

Tucker Act Breach Claim against US over Keepseagle Settlement Dismissed

Here are the materials in Labatte v. United States (Fed. Cl.):

9 US Motion to Dismiss

10 Response

16 Reply

17 Surreply

25 DCT Order

Split Tenth Circuit Panel Rules HUD Illegally Recaptured NAHASDA Funds but Tribes Cannot Recover

Here is the opinion in the consolidated appeal captioned Modoc Lassen Indian Housing Authority v. United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.

An excerpt from the lead opinion:

These consolidated appeals arise from a government agency’s decision to recapture, via administrative offset, funds that the agency allegedly overpaid to multiple grant recipients. The grant recipients brought suit in federal court, arguing in relevant part that the agency lacked authority to recapture the funds without first providing them with administrative hearings. The district court agreed and ordered the agency to repay the grant recipients. The agency now appeals that order.

If these underlying facts sound relatively straightforward, it’s because they are. But they nevertheless give rise to three legal questions that are decidedly less so: (1) did the agency recapture the funds pursuant to a statute or regulation that imposed a hearing requirement, thus rendering the recaptures illegal; (2) if the agency didn’t recapture the funds pursuant to such a statute or regulation, did it have authority to recapture the alleged overpayments at all; and (3) if not, must the agency reimburse the grant recipients for the amounts it illegally collected?

In answering the first of these three questions, the panel unanimously agrees that the agency didn’t recapture the funds pursuant to a statute or regulation that imposes a hearing requirement. Thus, we agree that the district court erred in ruling that the recipients were entitled to hearings before the agency could recapture the alleged overpayments.

But that’s where our unanimous agreement ends; the remaining questions divide the panel. Ultimately, two members of the panel agree that the agency lacked authority to recapture the funds via administrative offset. Accordingly, we affirm the portion of the district court’s order that characterizes the recaptures as illegal. Nevertheless, two other members of the panel agree that if the agency no longer has the recaptured funds in its possession, then the district court lacked authority to order the agency to repay the recipients. Thus, we reverse that portion of the district court’s order and remand for further factual findings.

Briefs:

HUD Brief

Tribes Brief

HUD Reply

Tenth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Challenge to San Ildefonso Pueblo Land Rights

Here is the unpublished opinion in Northern New Mexicans Protecting Land Water and Rights v. United States.

Briefs here.

Federal Court Orders More Briefing on Ownership Liability in CERCLA Suit Involving Navajo Reservation Uranium Mining

Here are the materials in El Paso Natural Gas Co. LLC v. United States (D. Ariz.):

114 Plaintiff Motion for Summary J

119 US Response

123 Reply

128 DCT Order

An excerpt:

Plaintiff El Paso Natural Gas Company brought suit under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (“CERCLA”) against Defendants United States of America, United States Department of the Interior, United States Bureau of Indian Affairs, United States Geological Survey, United States Department of Energy, and United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (collectively, “United States”). Doc. 55. Plaintiff has filed a motion for partial summary judgment. Doc. 114. The motion is fully briefed (Docs. 114, 119, 123), and the Court heard oral argument on June 1, 2017. For reasons that follow, the Court rejects the United States’ sovereign immunity defense and will require additional briefing on the question of its CERCLA owner liability.