Articles Posted in Government Law

by
The issue before the Supreme Court in this matter centered on whether Denver could properly use quantified transmountain lawn irrigation return flows (LIRFs) as a substitute supply of water for its Civil Action (C.A.)3635 exchanges. The Court held that that properly quantified transmountain LIRFs are legally indistinguishable from reusable transmountain effluent and, therefore, the water court correctly determined that Denver could use its properly quantified transmountain LIRFs as substitute supply for the appropriative rights of exchange in C.A. 3635. In addition, the Court affirmed the water court's holding that junior appropriators could not claim injury premised solely upon the proper operation of the C.A. 3635 exchanges. View "Denver v. Englewood" on Justia Law

by
The Colorado Supreme Court answered a question of Colorado law certified from the United States Court of Federal Claims. Plaintiffs were landowners who owned property abutting a former railroad right-of-way. The United States authorized the right-of-way to be used as a recreational trail pursuant to the National Trails System Act ("Rails-to-Trails" Act). The issue before the federal court was whether the United States took property for which Plaintiffs should have received compensation. The Colorado Court determined that the centerline presumption was a common law rule of conveyance that presumed a grantor who conveyed land abutting a right-of-way intended to convey land to the center of the right-of-way and absent a contrary intent on the face of the conveyance. Therefore, while the Court held that the centerline presumption applied to railroad rights-of-way, it also held that, to claim presumptive ownership to the centerline of a railroad right-of-way, an adjacent landowner must produce evidence that his or her title derives from the owner of the land underlying the right-of-way. View "Asmussen v. United States" on Justia Law

by
Kathleen Hopkins retired from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. During her period of employment, the Department made contributions to her retirement fund, and once she retired, she began taking retirement payments from that fund. Later, she went to work for the Department again. When she was laid off from this second period of employment, she applied for and was awarded unemployment benefits. Benefits were discontinued and she was issued a notice of overpayment. She appealed the notice and a hearing officer restored her benefits. The Department appealed, and a panel of the Industrial Claim Appeals Office (ICAO) reversed the hearing officer's decision, reasoning that Hopkins was ineligible to receive unemployment benefits because her retirement income exceeded the amount of the unemployment. Hopkins appealed, and the court of appeals reversed, holding that the offset provision applied only when the employer contributed to the claimant's retirement fund during the base period of employment that made her eligible for unemployment benefits. The Supreme Court disagreed with the appeals court and reversed, finding that the offset provision applied any time the employer has contributed to the retirement fund from which the claimant received payments, regardless of when the contributions were made. View "Industrial Claim Appeals Office v. Colorado Dept. of Labor & Employment" on Justia Law