GEORGE METZ, ET AL.
METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT OF NASHVILLE AND DAVIDSON COUNTY, TN, ET AL.
Session August 23, 2017
from the Chancery Court for Davidson County No. 16-507-II
Carol L. McCoy, Chancellor
appeal concerns a determination by the Planning Commission
("the Commission") of the Metropolitan Government
of Nashville and Davidson County ("Metro") that the
Forest View Park planned unit development was
"active." Certain Forest View neighbors
("Petitioners") filed a petition for writ of
certiorari against respondents Metro and The Ridge at
Antioch, Limited Partnership ("Respondents, "
collectively) in the Chancery Court for Davidson County
("the Trial Court") challenging the
Commission's decision. Metro filed a motion to dismiss.
After a hearing, the Trial Court entered an order dismissing
the petition for writ of certiorari for lack of jurisdiction.
The Trial Court found fatal defects in the petition for writ
of certiorari, including that it was not supported by oath as
required. Petitioners appeal to this Court. We affirm the
judgment of the Trial Court.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the Chancery
Court Affirmed; Case Remanded
Crawley, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Marilyn
Metz, George Metz, Aubrey Pearson, Jacqueline Pearson, Berry
Wright, and Evelyn Wright.
Cooper, Director of Law, Lora Barkenbus Fox, and Catherine J.
Pham, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, the
Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County.
William N. Helou, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, The
Ridge at Antioch, Limited Partnership.
Michael Swiney, C.J., delivered the opinion of the court, in
which Andy D. Bennett and John W. McClarty, JJ., joined.
MICHAEL SWINEY, CHIEF JUDGE
decisions arising from three meetings of the Commission, all
related to affordable housing development, are at issue on
appeal. These meetings took place on March 24, April 14, and
May 12, 2016. On April 14, the minutes of the March 24
meeting were approved and signed. On April 28, the minutes of
the April 14 meeting were approved and signed. Finally, on
May 26, the minutes of the May 12 meeting were approved and
signed. As a result of these meetings, the Commission
determined that the Forest View Park planned unit development
16, 2016, Petitioners filed their petition for writ of
certiorari and supersedeas seeking review of the
Commission's decision. The petition alleged, in part,
that "the Commission acted in an arbitrary and
judicially excessive manner when it found the Forest View
Park PUD to be active." The petition was not supported
by oath. On May 23, 2016, Petitioners filed an amended
petition. The amended petition was not supported by oath
either. On June 6, 2016, Petitioners filed yet another
amended petition, which also was not supported by oath. On
August 5, 2016, Metro filed a motion to dismiss. Only on
August 15 did Petitioners file a proposed new petition that
was sworn to and otherwise compliant with the requirements
for a petition for writ of certiorari. On August 19, 2016,
the Trial Court conducted a hearing on Metro's motion to
dismiss. On August 30, 2016, the Trial Court entered an order
granting Metro's motion to dismiss for lack of
jurisdiction. The Trial Court stated, as pertinent:
The Court finds that the latest of the challenged Planning
Commission decisions was made May 12, 2016. The Petition was
filed May 16, 2016. The Petition does not state that it is
the first application for the writ and is not verified as
required under the Tennessee Constitution.
The minutes approving the May 12 decision were approved and
signed on May 26, 2016. More than sixty days have passed
since those minutes were approved and signed. Because the
Petition does not state that it is the first application for
the writ and is not verified, the Court has no jurisdiction
to review the Planning Commission's decision. Nor does
the Court have jurisdiction to grant a motion to amend the
petition or to convert it to a declaratory judgment action.
Pursuant to Article VI, Section 10 of the Tennessee
Constitution and Talley v. Bd. of Prof'l
Responsibility, 358 S.W.3d 185, 192 (Tenn. 2011), this
case is DISMISSED. Costs are hereby taxed to Petitioners.
This is the final order.
subsequently filed their "motion requesting
relief." On October 20, 2016, the Trial Court entered
its order denying Petitioners' motion ...