By — Curtis Jones
Board of Commissioners of Hendricks County, Indiana, and Daum LLC, et al v. Town of Plainfield, Indiana, et al, discusses a jurisdictional dispute between a county and a town concerning storm water management. Before addressing the jurisdictional dispute, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the rule, as explained in City of Mishawaka v. Mohney, 156 Ind. App. 668, 672, 297 N.E.2d 858, 860 (1973), that a municipality cannot seek declaratory relief to have its own ordinance declared valid.
In addressing the jurisdictional battle, the Indiana Court of Appeals held that Indiana’s Storm Water Act, Indiana Code chapter 8-1.5-5, specifically addressed the jurisdictional issue between a town and county concerning storm water management. The Storm Water Act unambiguously draws a jurisdictional line at a town’s municipal boundaries. A county has exclusive jurisdiction to manage storm water flowing from property located outside of a municipal boundary.