WEB: Pinewild Annexation Lawsuit Dismissed
A Superior Court judge today dismissed a lawsuit in filed by a group of Pinewild residents seeking to block annexation of their gated community by the village of Pinehurst.
"No genuine issue of material fact exists," Superior Court Judge Lindsay R. Davis Jr. said in throwing out the lawsuit filed in Moore County Superior Court. "Pinehurst is entitled to judgment as a matter of law."
Davis directed Village Attorney Mike Newman to prepare a proposed order.
"They lost on all counts," Newman said.
Attorney Robert Hornik Jr., who represented the Pinewild plaintiffs along with Lydia Boesch, an attorney who lives in Pinewild, had argued that their case was unique and the that courts had not previously ruled on matters such as this in which an entire gated community was being annexed without consent.
Newman contended that residents who live in gated communities do not enjoy any more protection against involuntary annexation than anybody else in North Carolina. Private property is the same whether gated or not, he said.
After details in the draft order are worked out between the attorneys, a final version will go to Davis to sign.
A group of 60 Pinewild residents, along with the company that owns the development, filed the lawsuit Aug. 9. In October, a Superior Court judge dismissed two of the claims in the suit.
Meanwhile, another lawsuit seeking to the block the annexation was filed in federal court Jan. 31. That suit, filed by attorney Gene Boyce claims that the involuntary annexation of Pinewild by the village is "an illegal taking" prohibited by the U.S Constitution and will significantly diminish property values, and that the village is constitutionally obligated to compensate residents for that taking.
The village has adopted a resolution to annex Pinewild effective June 30. The annexation cannot take place while legal action is pending.
Check back with ThePilot.com for updates.
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