Olsen v. Park City

November 7, 2013

Utah Court of Appeals

2013 UT App 262

Filed:  November 7, 2013

The Court of Appeals held that “enactment” in § 801 of LUDMA includes all actions needed for an ordinance to become valid. This means that the time to appeal an ordinance adopted by a local government will begin to run from the date the final action is taken to make the ordinance “valid.”

In this case, a group of citizens challenged an ordinance approving a subdivision.  The ordinance was adopted by the City Council on February 25, received the required signatures from the Mayor and other city officials, and it was published on March 3.  The appeal was filed on March 31.  The City argued that the 30-day time period for an appeal began to run on February 25, when the City Council approved the ordinance.  However, the Court of Appeals found that the time for appeal began to run on March 3, when the ordinance was published.

The Court reasoned that publication was the final step in the ordinance’s “enactment.”  The Court interpreted the term “enactment” in § 801 of LUDMA as meaning all of the steps to give an ordinance full validity.  Adoption by the City Council was an important step, as was the signature from the Mayor.  However, according to the City Code, ordinances do not take effect until they are published, so publication is the final step, and the appeal period begins to run from the publication date.

Full Text of Olsen v. Park City