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Pend Oreille View Estates v. T.T. LLC

Supreme Court of Idaho

November 1, 2016

PEND OREILLE VIEW ESTATES, OWNERS' ASSOCIATION, INC., Plaintiff/Respondent,
v.
T.T. LLC, an Idaho limited liability company; NADIA BEISER; DAVID M. RICHARDS; MARY BETH GIACOMO; and MATTHEW A. FARNER, Defendants/Appellants, MATTHEW A. FARNER and MARY BETH GIACOMO, Third-Party Plaintiffs/Appellants
v.
THERESA ZIRWES, Third-Party Defendant/Respondent.

         2016 Opinion No. 112

         Appeal from the District Court of the First Judicial District of the State of Idaho, in and for Bonner County. Hon. Barbara A. Buchanan, District Judge.

         The judgment of the district court is affirmed.

          Brent C. Featherston, Featherston Law Firm Chtd., Sandpoint, argued for appellants.

          Peter C. Erbland, Lake City Law Group PLLC, Coeur d'Alene, argued for respondent.

          EISMANN, Justice.

         This is an appeal out of Bonner County from a judgment upholding money judgments against lot owners in phase two of a subdivision for assessments made for the cost of paving a road across phase one of the subdivision that provides access from the county road to phase two. We affirm the judgment of the district court.

         I.

         Factual Background.

         This lawsuit involves a subdivision named Pend Oreille View Estates, which was developed in two phases. The first phase ("Phase I") consisted of 20-acre tracts, and the second phase ("Phase II") consisted of 60-acre tracts. On July 26, 1994, the developer recorded the declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions for Phase I ("Phase I CC&Rs"), and an amendment to the Phase I CC&Rs was recorded on January 20, 1995.

         On February 15, 1995, Pend Oreille View Estates Owner's Association, Inc. ("Association"), was incorporated. Its stated powers were to "provide for the acquisition, construction, management, operation, administration, maintenance, repair, improvement, preservation, insurance, and architectural control of Association property within that certain subdivision in Bonner County, Idaho, commonly known as Pend Oreille View Estates, Phase I."

         On January 25, 1995, the developer recorded the declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions for Phase II ("Phase II CC&Rs"), and an amendment to the Phase II CC&Rs was recorded on May 31, 2005. The Phase II CC&Rs required that each owner of property in Phase II must be a member of the Association.

         The Association desired to pave the roads that went from the public road, across Phase I, to Phase II because of the dust created by vehicles on the roads and the cost of maintaining unpaved roads. It sent its members notice of a special meeting to be held on July 24, 2012, to vote on an amendment to the bylaws to permit a special assessment on the members to pay for the paving of the roads. On February 17, 1995, the members of the Association voted to adopt an amendment to the bylaws, which provided for special assessments on the members to pave the roads in Phase I. The Association decided to pave the roads that went from the public road, across Phase I, to Phase II. On July 24, 2012, the members voted to adopt the proposed amendment, which stated as follows:

4.02.01 One Time Road Paving Assessment. There will be a one-time assessment assigned to each tract owned by the members of POVE I [Phase I] and POVE II [Phase II] to facilitate the paving of Turtle Rock Road, Redtail Hawk Road and Destiny Lane. Billing will be assessed by distance from Baldy Mountain Road to the P.O.V.E. Member's property. Invoices were mailed July 25, 2012 and payment is due Sept. 23, 2012. Paving to commence in late September, 2012.

         After the amendment, the Association sent notices of assessments to all of its members who owned property in Phases I and II. T.T., LLC, Nadia Beiser, David M. Richards, Mary Beth Giacomo, and Matthew A. Farner (collectively "the Defendants") all owned real property in Phase II. The Association sent them bills for their respective assessments. When they did not pay the assessments, the Association recorded liens against their properties.

         On November 12, 2013, the Association filed this action seeking foreclosure of the liens and money judgments against the Defendants for the amounts of their respective assessments. Ms. Giacomo and Mr. Farner filed a counterclaim against the Association for slander of title, quiet title, an injunction, and a declaratory judgment, and they filed a third party complaint alleging the same claims against Theresa Zirwes, the Association's secretary/treasurer who signed and recorded the lien claims.

         On May 19, 2014, the Association moved for summary judgment, and on June 11, 2014, the Defendants moved for summary judgment. After the motions were briefed and argued, the district court granted the Association's motion and denied the Defendants' motion. On July 23, 2014, the court entered a judgment awarding the Association the sum of $41, 540.34 against T.T., LLC, Nadia Beiser and David M. Richards on count one; the sum of $23, 740.17 against Beth Giacomo and Matthew A. Farner on count two; and the sum of $23, 740.17 against Beth Giacomo and Matthew A. Farner on count three, and it dismissed the counterclaims and third party claims with prejudice. On August 6, 2014, the Defendants filed a motion to reconsider. After argument and briefing, the court denied ...


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