Hideout Judge Rules In Summit County’s Favor
A ruling from a Fourth District Judge this afternoon came down in favor of Summit County, and struck down Hideout Town’s annexation last fall of 350 acres extending into Summit.
Judge Jennifer Brown granted a motion for Summary Judgment for Summit County. She agreed with the county, that, after the Hideout Town Council voted for annexation on October 16 of last year, they did not complete the process to legally enact the annexation before October 20th.
On that date, legislation took effect that nullified Hideout’s ability to annex across county lines without Summit County’s permission.
The Judge agreed that Hideout’s annexation was invalid, legally speaking, from the beginning.
She said the town’s annexation ordinance did not take effect until October 26. And a certificate of annexation from the Lt. Governor’s Office was not issued until October 28th—and furthermore, she said, was based on inaccurate and false information.
The Judge also denied a motion from Hideout, which had argued that Summit County didn’t have standing to bring a lawsuit.
The Judge found that Summit County has a claim to property adjoining the annexation and affected by it. She said the county brought the litigation in timely fashion.
And Judge Brown ruled there was standing because the issues raised in the litigation are of great public interest and societal impact for the residents of two adjoining counties.
In a statement to KPCW, Summit County Attorney Margaret Olson said, “Today is the beginning of the end of this unfortunate episode in Wasatch Back land-use relations.” She said Hideout lost its race against the clock to implement what she called a cross-county, non-contiguous hostile annexation.
She added that Summit County hopes all the parties can put the past behind them and work cooperatively on regional planning solutions.
Hideout’s attorneys, at this time, have not replied to a request for comment.
By happenstance, Judge Brown’s ruling came on the very day that Hideout’s citizens voted on a referendum to approve or reject the annexation.