Justia Government & Administrative Law Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Wyoming Supreme Court
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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) upholding the decision of the Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) suspending Defendant's driver's license and operating privileges pursuant to Wyo. Stat. Ann. 31-6-102(e), holding that the OAH reasonably concluded as it did.Defendant was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. Because a breathalyzer test indicated that Defendant had a blood alcohol concentration greater than .08% the WYDOT suspended Defendant's driver's license. The OAH upheld the suspension. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that substantial evidence supported the OAH's finding that law enforcement did not interfere with Defendant's right to obtain an independent chemical test under Wyo. Stat. Ann. 31-6-102(a)(ii)(C) and 31-6-105(d). View "Flauding v. State ex rel. Wyoming Department of Transportation" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court affirming the determination of the Medical Commission Hearing Panel that Scott Triplett failed to meet his burden to show entitlement to a right hip replacement, holding that the Medical Panel's decision was neither arbitrary or capricious.The Medical Panel determined that Triplett did not meet his burden of proof to establish that the hip replacement surgery was a reasonable and necessary medical treatment for any injury related to his work injury. The district court affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the Medical Panel's determination was supported by substantial evidence and was not arbitrary, capricious, or otherwise contrary to law. View "Triplett v. State, ex rel. Department of Workforce Services" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court reversing in part and affirming in part the decision of the Wyoming Board of Medicine to suspend Dr. Rebecca Painter's medical license, holding that the district court did not err.The Board appointed two members (Petitioners) to file a complaint and petition alleging that Painter had violated certain provisions of the Wyoming Medical Practice Act, Wyo. Stat. Ann. 33-26-101 through -703. After a contested case hearing, the Board terminated Painter's license upon finding that Painter had exploited her professional relationship with a patient and the patient's family and improperly terminated the physician-patient relationship. The Board then assessed costs and fees against Painter. The district court affirmed some violations, reversed other violations, reversed the Board's assessed fees and affirmed all other costs. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the contested case hearing procedure did not violate Painter's due process rights; (2) the Board's finding that Painter exploited her professional relationship with the patient was supported by clear and convincing evidence; and (3) the Board's finding that Painter improperly terminated the physician-patient relationship was supported by substantial evidence. View "Hallingbye ex rel. Wyoming Board of Medicine v. Painter" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court affirming the decision of the Board of Trustees of Laramie County School District Number Two (the Board) dismissing Appellant from his teaching contract with Laramie County School District Number Two (the District) after Appellant disciplined his daughter at school, holding that substantial evidence supported the Board's dismissal decision.At issue was whether district policies and professional conduct standards applied to Appellant, a teacher, who disciplined his child, a student, on school grounds during school hours. The Board concluded that those policies and standards applied to Appellant and dismissed him. The district court affirmed the dismissal and affirmed the Board's decision to pay Appellant only a pro-rata portion of extra-duty pay for coaching track and no bonus following his suspension with pay. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) substantial evidence supported the Board's decision dismissing Appellant; and (2) there was no Board decision on extra-duty or bonus pay for this Court to review. View "Mirich v. State ex rel., Board of Trustees of Laramie County School District Two" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court reversed the decision of the Laramie County Planning Commission denying Asphalt Specialities Co., Inc.'s (ASCI) site plan application for a hard rock quarry operation in Laramie County, holding that the Commission's decision was unlawful and must be set aside under Wyo. Stat. Ann. 16-3-114(c)(ii).At issue on appeal was whether the Commission's decision to deny ASCI's application was in excess of statutory jurisdiction, authority or limits or lacking statutory right. The Supreme Court concluded that it was, holding that the Commission exceeded its statutory authority when it utilized its comprehensive land use plan and the site plan review process to deny ASCI use of its land for a limited gravel mining operation. View "Asphalt Specialties Co., Inc. v. Laramie County Planning Commission" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court dismissing Plaintiff's pro se complaint filed under the Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act alleging that the Wyoming Department of Corrections (WDOC) inmate classification policies are invalid rules, holding that the WDOC's inmate classification policy is not a rule required to be filed with the Wyoming Secretary of State.Plaintiff pled guilty to kidnapping and first-degree sexual assault and was sentenced to two concurrent life sentences. In his complaint for declaratory judgment Plaintiff alleged that the failure to file WDOC policies and procedures with the Secretary of State rendered them, and any actions taken pursuant to them, void. Therefore, Plaintiff claimed that his recent inmate classification was void. The district court dismissed the complaint. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the WDOC was not required to file the inmate classification policy at issue with the Secretary of State's office, and therefore, Plaintiff failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. View "Bird v. Lampert" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court remanded this case to the district court with instructions to determine whether excusable neglect extended Plaintiff's time to file the petition for review of the decision of the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) concluding that Plaintiff's infection was not compensable, holding that the record did not reveal whether the district court considered the question of excusable neglect.Plaintiff scraped his knuckle on a locker as he was getting ready to leave a trona mine, where he worked. The scrape developed necrotizing fasciitis, causing serious injuries. The Department of Workforce Services, Workers' Compensation Division, deemed Plaintiff's injury compensable. The OAH served an order concluding that Plaintiff's injuries were not compensable. The district court reversed, concluding that Plaintiff's infection was compensable. Plaintiff's employer appealed, arguing that the district court lacked jurisdiction because the petition for judicial review was untimely filed. The Supreme Court remanded the case for the limited purpose of determining whether excusable neglect extended the time for filing a petition for review. View "Tata Chemicals Soda Ash Partners, Ltd v. Vinson" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the Teton County Board of County Commissioners approving an application by the Teton Raptor Center for an amended conditional use permit (CUP) to expand the use of its property, holding that the Board's decision was not arbitrary and capricious and did not violate the law.In 2008, after obtaining variances to address nonconformities on structures on its property the Raptor Center obtained a CUP allowing the Raptor Center to operate its bird care and education facility. In 2017, the Raptor Center decided to expand its use of the site and applied to amend its 2008 CUP. The Board approved the application. Petitioners - nearby landowners and other parties - appealed, and the district court affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) Petitioners had standing to appeal the Board's decision; and (2) the Board reasonably concluded that the amended CUP complied with all relevant standards and resolutions and that the amended CUP substantially complied with the requirements of the 2008 variance. View "HB Family Limited Partnership v. Teton County Board of County Commissioners" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Department of Workforce Services, Unemployment Insurance Commission denying Jesse Gerber unemployment benefits, holding that the Commission correctly determined that Gerber was not eligible for employment benefits.The Commission determined that Gerber had left work voluntarily without good cause and did not qualify for the "returning to approved training" exception in Wyo. Stat. Ann. 27-3-311(a)(i)(B). The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Gerber did not meet the conditions of the statutory exception, and therefore, the Commission's decision denying Gerber unemployment benefits conformed with the law. View "Gerber v. State ex rel., Department of Workforce Services" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Medical Commission upholding that decision of the Wyoming Workers' Safety and Compensation Division denying workers' compensation benefits because Appellant failed to establish a causal connection between his injury and employment, holding that the Commission's decision was not contrary to the overwhelming weight of the evidence.The Division denied benefits because Appellant did not submit evidence establishing a causal connection between his injury and employment as required by Wyo. Stat. Ann. 27-14-603(a). The Commission upheld the denial of benefits after rejecting the opinions of Appellant's medical experts. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the Commission's determination that Appellant failed to meet his burden under section 27-14-603(a) for an injury occurring over a substantial period of time was not contrary to the overwhelming weight of the evidence. View "McMillan v. State, ex rel. Department of Workforce Services, Workers' Compensation Division" on Justia Law