Legal costs ascend in SilverWing lawsuit

Print Article

A model hangar home is seen through a security gate at SilverWing at Sandpoint. (Photo by KEITH KINNAIRD)

SANDPOINT — Bonner County commissioners declared a financial emergency Wednesday to sustain its vigorous defense of a multi-million-dollar lawsuit filed by developers of SilverWing at Sandpoint.

The declaration enables the county to pull additional funding from a contingency account in the county’s justice fund to cover legal costs in the federal lawsuit.

The county budgeted $400,000 in the current fiscal year to fend off the suit and the emergency declaration increases that line item by another $450,000, for a total of $850,000.

The county spent $400,000 during the last fiscal year on the SilverWing suit.

“It’s the nature of the litigation and the risk is so high that we have to fight it aggressively,” said Commissioner Mike Nielsen, noting that an adverse judgment could cost taxpayers up to $26 million. “We cannot afford to ignore this litigation.”

SilverWing, a fly-in housing project under development on west side of Sandpoint Airport, filed suit in U.S. District Court last year, alleging that the county engaged in unfair dealings and violated the developers’ rights to equal protection under the law.

The 45-unit subdivision features hybrid dwellings that are part residence and part aircraft hangar. At the time of the suit’s filing, developers said $6.1 million had been spent grading home sites and installing utility and road infrastructure.

When the developers purchased the 18-acre site in 2007, an easement afforded through-the-fence access to the airport grounds.

SilverWing alleges in the suit that the county sought to shutter direct access to the airport under pressure from the Federal Aviation Administration and was not forthright about plans to relocate a runway, which it argues would encroach onto its property and conflict with a $500,000 taxiway it developed.

The matter is set to be tried in federal court this spring, according to Nielsen.

Print Article

Read More News

The Latest: Tokyo subway temporarily closed over N. Korea

AP

April 28, 2017 at 9:01 pm | SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The Latest on North Korea test-firing a missile Saturday (all times local): 1:05 p.m. One of Tokyo's major subways systems says it shut down all lines for 10 minutes...

Comments

Read More

Celebrating ‘collective confidence’

April 28, 2017 at 11:49 am | Coeur d'Alene Press By BRIAN WALKER Hagadone News Network COEUR d'ALENE — From strong roots comes the prospect of bountiful fruit. The first 30 years of Jobs Plus have laid the foundation for exciting economic deve...

Comments

Read More

Second arrest in alleged beating

April 28, 2017 at 11:48 am | Bonner County Daily Bee SANDPOINT — A second suspect has been arrested in connection with an alleged attack that hospitalized a Bonner County man last month. Shane Alan Carson, 30, is charged with first-degree kidnapping a...

Comments

Read More

City puts public art on display

April 28, 2017 at 11:48 am | Bonner County Daily Bee SANDPOINT — The Sandpoint Arts Commission will soon create a program of annually alternating sculptures on the Sand Creek bike and pedestrian path near City Beach called the "Silver Box Project....

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 263-9534
PO Box 159
Sandpoint, ID 83864

©2017 Bonner County Daily Bee Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X