United States District Court, D. Idaho
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
C. Nye U.S. District Court Judge
are two pending motions in this matter. Pro se Plaintiffs
Kristin and Cache Miller (“the Millers”) filed a
“Motion for Relief (i.e. Injunctive Relief)” on
November 14, 2017. Dkt. 17. Defendant The State of Idaho,
appearing on behalf of the Idaho Transportation Board
(“the State”), filed a Motion for Judgment on the
Pleadings on December 5, 2017. Dkt. 18. Having reviewed the
record, the Court finds that the parties have adequately
presented the facts and legal arguments in the briefs.
Accordingly, in the interest of avoiding further delay, and
because the Court finds that the decisional process would not
be significantly aided by oral argument, the Court decides
the pending Motions on the record without oral argument.
Dist. Idaho Loc. Civ. R. 7.1(d)(2)(ii). For the reasons set
forth below, the Court finds good cause to GRANT the Motion
for Judgment on the Pleadings. The Court also DENIES the
Motion for Relief as moot.
of 2012, the State served a complaint and summons on the
Millers declaring that it was exercising its eminent domain
powers to condemn a portion of property owned by the Millers
in Eagle, Idaho. See State ex rel. Idaho Transp.
Bd., No. CV-OC-2012-08146, at 1 (Idaho 4th Jud. Dist.
Mar. 11, 2013). The State was endeavoring to extend State
Highway 16 from State Highway 44 to U.S. Highway 20-26 across
the Boise River. Id. At the time, the Millers'
property was accessible from both Highway 16 and Schultz
Court. The State sought to condemn any access rights to the
Millers' property from Highway 16. Id. The State
also sought temporary easements across the property for
construction purposes. Id. at 1-2.
time, the Millers were using the property, which consisted of
three separate parcels of land (known as Parcels 42, 43, and
44), as an event venue. Id. at 4. The property had
one building on it, which was located on Parcel 44.
Id. The Millers used Parcels 42 and 43 for
additional parking. Id.
Millers did not respond to the complaint. Accordingly, on
October 19, 2012, the Fourth Judicial District of the State
of Idaho, in and for the County of Ada, entered default
against the Millers. Id. at 7. After the state court
entered default, the only issue that remained was the amount
of compensation the State owed the Millers for the taking.
Id. at 7-8. The court held a hearing on this issue,
and Cache Miller appeared on behalf of the Millers.
Id. at 7. After an extensive analysis, on March 11,
2013, the court entered a Memorandum Decision and Order
finding as follows:
1) The taking of the property involved was for a purpose and
use authorized by law, namely the construction and/or
maintenance of roads and by roads.
2) The takings made necessary for such use are appropriate to
and necessary for such use.
3) That the complaint substantially complies with the
requirements of section 7-707, Idaho Code.
4) That the amount needed to provide the condemnees' with
just compensation for the taking in this case is . . . $381,
Id. at 18. The compensation included “costs of
cure resulting from the taking, ” which included
replacing the Millers' well, installing new fencing, and
constructing a new gravel road to provide interconnectivity
between the Parcels. Id. at 7. The court then
entered final judgment in the case. The Millers did not
appeal the decision and the State paid the Millers the
decision on just compensation, the state court found it
appropriate to treat Parcels 42, 43, and 44 “as a
single unified parcel under common ownership of the
Millers” because, as of the date of the summons, May 4,
2012, that was the status of the Parcels. Id. at 13.
In doing so, the state court rejected the Millers'
argument “that because of a pending foreclosure
involving one or more of the parcels, Parcel 44 must be
considered to be a ‘landlocked' parcel that the
state [was] obliged to purchase outright.” Id.
At some point after the condemnation final judgment Parcels,
42 and 43 were foreclosed on and/or sold. As a result of
these actions, the Millers no longer had road access to
Parcel 44. The State's condemnation action had cut off
their access to the Parcel via Highway 16 and the
foreclosure/sale had cut off their access to the Parcel via
Schultz Court. Parcel 44 was then land-locked.
Millers were unable to sell or rent Parcel 44, so they began
using it as their home. Dkt. 1 at 5. After the condemnation,
the Millers did not have a replacement well installed, so the
building does not have running water. Apparently, despite the
condemnation, the Millers have continued to use Highway 16 to
access their home. The Idaho Transportation Department has