Miss. Comm’n on Env. Quality v. Bell Utilities – The former owner of the Black Creek Wastewater Treatment plant (Black Creek is located in the DeSoto National Forest) had been fined for illegal discharges into the Black Creek. Bell purchased the facility in 2004 and made improvements. However, when it later sold the facility to Utility One in 2010, the MDEQ Permit Board refused to transfer the permit claiming that Bell had had continuing compliance problems. Bell appealed to the Forest County Chancery Court arguing that 1) the Admin. Proc. Act (MCA Sect. 25-43-1.01 et seq.)requires the Board to promulgate hearing procedures for its formal evidentiary hearings 2) the failure to do so violated Bell’s right to due process, 3) the Board’s decision was arbitrary and not supported by substantial evidence and 4) the Board could not condition transfer of the permit upon payment by Bell of $20,000 to MDEQ. The chancellor found for Bell and MDEQ appealed.
Kimbrough v. Estate of Kimbrough – This concerns the estate of David “Junior” Kimbrough who died in 1998 and was purported to have 36 children. The Appellant alleges that the director of Fat Possum Records, Matthew Johnson, took advantage of the illiterate Kimbrough and that the confidential relationship between Johnson and Kimbrough demands scrutiny of several contracts and the will signed by Kimbrough before his death. Only Kimbrough’s reply brief is available online but this promises to be an interesting argument.