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

In Putin's heartland, apathy and disappointment rule

AP

December 11, 2017 at 7:33 am | NOVOKUZNETSK, Russia (AP) — Three months ahead of Russia's presidential election, apathy and disappointment pervade incumbent Vladimir Putin's heartland. Alexandra Chekh, a retired kindergarten d...

Comments

Read More

As bitcoin soars, warnings of a bubble proliferate

AP

December 11, 2017 at 7:15 am | Is bitcoin in a bubble? The price of bitcoin has been soaring this year, and last week alone it jumped from $11,000 to well over $17,000, according to Coindesk. It started the year below $1,000. ...

Comments

Read More

AP: Rohingya methodically raped by Myanmar's armed forces

AP

December 11, 2017 at 6:17 am | UKHIA, Bangladesh (AP) — The soldiers arrived, as they often did, long after sunset. It was June, and the newlyweds were asleep in their home, surrounded by the fields of wheat they farmed in wes...

Comments

Read More

Clarification: Sweden-Synagogue-Arson story

AP

December 11, 2017 at 5:39 am | HELSINKI (AP) — In a story Dec. 10, The Associated Press reported that the fire-bombing of a synagogue in Goteborg was the second anti-Jewish attack in Sweden in as many days. The story should have c...

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