Case: Bellant v. Snyder

2:17-cv-13887 | U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Filed Date: Dec. 1, 2017

Closed Date: Dec. 11, 2018

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This is a case about Michigan's emergency manager law, Public Act 436. The Act gave the state legislature power to appoint "Emergency Managers" for municipalities in financial emergencies. Emergency Managers had powers that were previously reserved for locally elected officials, not limited to financial decisions, and were exempted from certain local laws. Under this Act, broad discretion was given to the governor to appoint individuals for these positions. The Michigan legislature enacted Publ…

This is a case about Michigan's emergency manager law, Public Act 436. The Act gave the state legislature power to appoint "Emergency Managers" for municipalities in financial emergencies. Emergency Managers had powers that were previously reserved for locally elected officials, not limited to financial decisions, and were exempted from certain local laws. Under this Act, broad discretion was given to the governor to appoint individuals for these positions. The Michigan legislature enacted Public Act 436 after Michigan voters rejected a similar ballot provision.

In response, Michigan residents filed this complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan on December 1, 2017. The plaintiffs sued a number of state officials, including the governor of Michigan, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Represented by the National Lawyers Guild, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and private counsel, the plaintiffs sought declaratory relief holding that Public Act 436 was in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Plaintiffs alleged that the Act unlawfully took voting power away from local communities. They further alleged that the Act invidiously discriminated against predominantly African-American communities. The case was assigned to Judge George Caram Steeh.

On March 12, 2018, the Defendants filed a motion to dismiss. On September 5, 2018, the motion was granted in part and denied in part. The court dismissed claims by the majority of the plaintiffs on grounds of mootness and lack of standing. Plaintiffs also stipulated to the dismissal of two former state treasurers after they acknowledged that their claims against these treasurers were barred by the Eleventh Amendment. 338 F.Supp.3d 651.

Shortly after beginning discovery, the parties agreed to voluntarily dismiss the case without prejudice, meaning that the plaintiff could bring the case at a later time. The court dismissed the case on December 11, 2018, and the case is now closed.

Summary Authors

Elizabeth Heise (9/25/2018)

Hope Brinn (5/13/2020)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6905970/parties/bellant-v-snyder/


Judge(s)

Steeh, George Caram III (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Arraf, Huwaida (Michigan)

Davis, Hugh M. Jr. (Michigan)

Goodman, William Harry (Michigan)

Heenan, Cynthia (Michigan)

Hurwitz, Julie H. (Michigan)

Paris, Anthony D. (Michigan)

Philo, John C. (Michigan)

Sanders, Herbert A. (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Barton, Denise C. (Michigan)

Judge(s)

Steeh, George Caram III (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Arraf, Huwaida (Michigan)

Davis, Hugh M. Jr. (Michigan)

Goodman, William Harry (Michigan)

Heenan, Cynthia (Michigan)

Hurwitz, Julie H. (Michigan)

Paris, Anthony D. (Michigan)

Philo, John C. (Michigan)

Sanders, Herbert A. (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Barton, Denise C. (Michigan)

Murphy, Michael F (Michigan)

Sherman, Ann (Michigan)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket

Dec. 11, 2018 Docket
1

Complaint for Declaratory Relief

Dec. 1, 2017 Complaint
27

Order Granting in Part and Denying in Part Defendants' Motion to Dismiss [ECF NO. 11]

Sept. 5, 2018 Order/Opinion
34

Stipulated Order of Dismissal Without Prejudice

May 19, 2020 Order/Opinion

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6905970/bellant-v-snyder/

Last updated May 20, 2022, 4:51 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
19

File Excess Pages

May 24, 2018 PACER
1

COMPLAINT for Declaratory Relief filed by All Plaintiffs against All Defendants. Plaintiff requests summons issued. Receipt No: 0645−6500395 − Fee: $ 400. County of 1st Plaintiff: Wayne − County Where Action Arose: Wayne − County of 1st Defendant: Wayne. [Previously dismissed case: No] [Possible companion case(s): USDC−Eastern District, 13−11370−GCS−RSW, Judge George Caram Steeh] (Heenan, Cynthia) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017
20

Response to Motion

May 24, 2018 PACER
2

SUMMONS Issued for *R. Kevin Clinton, Andrew Dillon, Nick Khouri, RICHARD D. SNYDER* (Krause, S) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017

A United States Magistrate Judge of this Court is available to conduct all proceedings in this civil action in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 636c and FRCP 73. The Notice, Consent, and Reference of a Civil Action to a Magistrate Judge form is available for download at http://www.mied.uscourts.gov (Krause, S) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017
21

Response to Motion

2 Exhibit 1 - Wendy Baxter Decision

View on PACER

May 24, 2018 PACER
3

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed. RICHARD D. SNYDER waiver sent on 12/27/2017, answer due 2/26/2018. (Barton, Denise) (Entered: 12/27/2017)

Dec. 27, 2017
22

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 19 Ex Parte MOTION for Leave to File Excess Pages to Response to Defendants' Motion to Dismiss filed by William Kincaid, et al and STRIKING 21 plaintiffs' brief in Response to Motion : Motion Hearing reset for 7/18/18 at 2:30 PM Signed by District Judge George Caram Steeh. (MBea)

June 1, 2018 RECAP
4

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed. Nick Khouri waiver sent on 12/15/2017, answer due 2/13/2018. (Heenan, Cynthia) (Entered: 01/16/2018)

Jan. 16, 2018
23

Stipulation and Order

June 4, 2018 PACER
5

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed. R. Kevin Clinton waiver sent on 12/19/2017, answer due 2/20/2018. (Heenan, Cynthia) (Entered: 01/16/2018)

Jan. 16, 2018
24

Response to Motion

1 Index of Exhibits

View on PACER

2 Exhibit 1 - Opinion of Hon. Wendy Baxter

View on PACER

3 Exhibit 2 - Legislative Record of Public Act 4 of 2011

View on PACER

4 Exhibit 3 - Email of Kevyn Orr dated 1/31/13

View on PACER

5 Exhibit 4 - Contract for Kevyn Orr as EM

View on PACER

6 Exhibit 5 - Legislative Record of Public Act 436 of 2012

View on PACER

7 Exhibit 6 - Fiscal Indicator Scores, MI Dept of Treasury, SOM

View on PACER

8 Exhibit 7 - Munetrix, Fiscal Indicator Scores

View on PACER

9 Exhibit 8 - Michigan Civil Rights Commission, The Flint Water Crisis: Systemic R

View on PACER

10 Exhibit 9 - Ecorse Receivership Exit letter

View on PACER

11 Exhibit 10 - Pontiac Receivership Exit letter

View on PACER

June 5, 2018 PACER
6

WAIVER OF SERVICE Returned Executed. Andrew Dillon waiver sent on 1/11/2018, answer due 3/12/2018. (Heenan, Cynthia) (Entered: 02/07/2018)

Feb. 7, 2018
25

File Excess Pages

June 12, 2018 PACER
26

Reply to Response to Motion

June 14, 2018 PACER
8

ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Denise C. Barton appearing on behalf of R. Kevin Clinton, Andrew Dillon, Nick Khouri, RICHARD D. SNYDER (Barton, Denise) (Entered: 02/14/2018)

Feb. 14, 2018
27

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 11 defendants' Motion to Dismiss. Signed by District Judge George Caram Steeh (MBea)

Sept. 5, 2018 RECAP
9

NOTICE of Appearance by Michael F. Murphy on behalf of All Defendants. (Murphy, Michael) (Entered: 02/20/2018)

Feb. 20, 2018
28

Answer to Complaint

Sept. 19, 2018 PACER
10

Ex Parte MOTION for Leave to File Excess Pages of Brief in Support of Motion to Dismiss by R. Kevin Clinton, Andrew Dillon, Nick Khouri, RICHARD D. SNYDER. (Barton, Denise) (Entered: 03/09/2018)

March 9, 2018

TEXT−ONLY ORDER Granting 10 Ex Parte MOTION for Leave to File Excess Pages of Brief in Support of Motion to Dismiss filed by RICHARD D. SNYDER, Andrew Dillon, R. Kevin Clinton, Nick Khouri. Entered by District Judge George Caram Steeh. (MBea) (Entered: 03/12/2018)

March 12, 2018
29

Appear*

Sept. 21, 2018 PACER
11

MOTION to Dismiss by R. Kevin Clinton, Andrew Dillon, Nick Khouri, RICHARD D. SNYDER. (Attachments: # 1 Index of Exhibits Exhibit List, # 2 Exhibit 1. Enrolled Senate Bill No. 865, # 3 Exhibit 2. Legislative Analysis Emergency Manager Law, # 4 Exhibit 3. Senate Bill Analysis 865) (Barton, Denise) (Entered: 03/12/2018)

March 12, 2018
31

Scheduling Order

Oct. 25, 2018 PACER
32

Scheduling Order

Oct. 25, 2018 PACER
12

NOTICE OF HEARING on 11 MOTION to Dismiss . Response due by 4/12/2018 Reply due by 5/3/2018 Motion Hearing set for 5/22/2018 10:00 AM before District Judge George Caram Steeh (MBea) (Entered: 03/20/2018)

March 20, 2018
33

Stipulation and Order

Nov. 15, 2018 PACER
13

ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: John C. Philo appearing on behalf of All Plaintiffs (Philo, John) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018
34

Dismissing Case - Stipulated Order

Dec. 11, 2018 PACER
14

NOTICE of Appearance by William H. Goodman on behalf of All Plaintiffs. (Goodman, William) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018
15

NOTICE of Appearance by Julie H. Hurwitz on behalf of All Plaintiffs. (Hurwitz, Julie) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018
16

NOTICE of Appearance by Huwaida Arraf on behalf of All Plaintiffs. (Arraf, Huwaida) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018
17

NOTICE of Appearance by Herbert A. Sanders on behalf of All Plaintiffs. (Sanders, Herbert) (Entered: 03/25/2018)

March 25, 2018
18

STIPULATION AND ORDER extending deadlines re 11 MOTION to Dismiss Response due by 5/24/2018 , Reply due by 6/7/2018 , Motion Hearing reset for 6/27/2018 02:30 PM before District Judge George Caram Steeh Signed by District Judge George Caram Steeh. (MBea) (Entered: 04/03/2018)

April 3, 2018
30

DISCOVERY plan jointly filed pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26(f) (Philo, John) (Entered: 10/18/2018)

Oct. 18, 2018

Minute Entry for proceedings before District Judge George Caram Steeh: Scheduling Conference held on 10/25/2018 (MBea) (Entered: 10/25/2018)

Oct. 25, 2018

State / Territory: Michigan

Case Type(s):

Election/Voting Rights

Key Dates

Filing Date: Dec. 1, 2017

Closing Date: Dec. 11, 2018

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Residents of the state of Michigan

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Governor of Michigan, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201

Constitutional Clause(s):

Equal Protection

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Funding

Voting

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination

Race:

Black

Voting:

Vote dilution