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Placer County Reaches Settlement on Land Use Case

July 28, 2011

The Placer County Board of Supervisors on Monday unanimously approved a settlement agreement on litigation involving alleged violations of law regarding the subdivision of parcels in Placer County. The litigation was initiated by the County in November 2007. The defendants in that action, Michelle Burris, Thomas Van Horne and George Wasley, brought separate legal actions in response to the County’s action. Burris served as a Placer County Planning Commissioner from January 2005 until June 2007. The approved settlement addresses all legal actions between the parties.

The settlement agreement was approved by the Supervisors in closed session during their regularly scheduled meeting. Under the agreement, all parties to the litigation will dismiss their lawsuits in their entirety.

Under the terms of the settlement agreement, the defendants agree to collectively pay Placer County $400,000. Other terms of the agreement include:

  • Without admitting wrongdoing, the defendants agree to abide by the Subdivision Map Act and all laws related to the subdividing and parceling of property in the County;
  • The defendants agree to abide by a moratorium on parceling in Placer County for a specified period;
  • Resolution of questions regarding whether the parcels identified in the County’s lawsuit comply with laws on subdividing;
  • A provision that Placer County and the defendants terminate all of the various disputes, controversies, claims, causes of action, etc., that exist between each other;
  • Discharge of any claims litigants may have against another litigant;
  • An agreement that no party will sue any other party on a claim arising from the agreement; and
  • Each party will be responsible for its own legal costs.

The settlement agreement took effect Monday.

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