Ark. Dep’t of Cmty. Corr. v. City of Pine Bluff

The Arkansas Department of Community Correction (DCC) owned a prison complex in Jefferson County that was part of several tracts of state land annexed to the City of Pine Bluff in 1999. The property was automatically zoned as residential. In 2011, DCC, with the approval of the Board of Correction, decided to use three existing buildings on its property to house persons who had been granted parole. The City objected to DCC's adding transitional housing to its prison complex. The circuit court granted declaratory judgment and injunctive relief in favor of the City, concluding that Ark. Code Ann. 16-93-1603 acted as a waiver of sovereign immunity and that DCC was subject to the zoning laws of the City. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the circuit court erred in concluding that the General Assembly intended to waive the State's sovereign immunity in section 16-93-1603, and therefore, the circuit court lacked jurisdiction to hear the City's petition pursuant to the doctrine of sovereign immunity. View "Ark. Dep't of Cmty. Corr. v. City of Pine Bluff" on Justia Law