Lawsuit Filed Against RALE, The County, Others Could Be Dismissed

A letter sent by the Circuit Court Clerk said that would happen within 30 days.

Frederick, Md (KM)  It looks like Residents Against Landsdale Expansion, the county and other parties may be freed from a lawsuit filed against them last year by the developers of the Monrovia Town Center.

RALE President Steve McKay says he and other members received a letter signed by Clerk of the Circuit Court Sandra Dalton which told the plaintiffs in the case, 75-8- Properties LLC, that the suit would be dismissed within 30 days without prejudice unless they can convince a court otherwise. “I think the court is basically saying either do something, or we’re tossing this out,” he says.

The suit filed last year, which listed RALE, the county and others as defendants, claimed that their actions were delaying the project, costing 75-80 Properties LLC $500,000. The last Board of County Commissioners approved the massive development in 2014, which calls for 1250 new homes on 392-acres near Routes 75 and 80. Opponents say it will  clogged up nearby roads which cannot handle the additional traffic.

After the suit was filed, McKay said neither he nor any other RALE member received a summons notifying them of the lawsuit. He said many wondered if they were, in fact, being sued.

But McKay says the Circuit Court might feel it’s time to settle this suit out of court. “There’s an exchange of letters between the county and the developer in September, where the county basically told the developer here are the terms of the review that’s coming up,” he says. “The developer said  ‘okay, grudgingly, we don’t accept this but we’ll go along. And we’ll seek a six-month stay on the suit.”

However, the court had other ideas, McKay says. “I kind of believe that the court maybe knows that that’s going on. And the court is basically saying ‘now, listen, you’re restarting the process. I don’t want this suit any more. I’m tossing it out. You have 30-days now to give me a good justification why I shouldn’t,'” he says.

As of yet, the Circuit Court has not officially dismissed the lawsuit, according to McKay.

He says RALE will need to consult with its attorney before deciding what to do next. “At this point, I’m not sure what we will do. I think the court is taking the right action. I think it may depend on how the developer responds,” McKay says.

By Kevin McManus