Some New Cases, News and Remembering What's Important

Our apologies for the lack of information recently.  We’ve been undergoing some changes and within the next few weeks, the Illinois Construction Law Blog will have a new address at http://www.illinoisconstructionlawblog.com courtesy of the fine people over at Lexblog.

Getting back into the swing of things, there are several noteworthy opinions that have come down in the past week:

  • TSP-Hope, Inc. v. Home Innovators of Illinois, LLC (4th Dist. Doc. No. 4-07-1028)  In this case, the plaintiff had contracted with the defendant to build residential units.  The contract contained an arbitration clause and although the defendant answered the complaint and filed a counter-claim and affirmative defenses, the court found that it had not waived its right to arbitrate the contract dispute.  Additionally, the plaintiff had served the defendant with a §34 notice under the Mechanic’s Lien Act (requiring the lien claimant to file a complaint within 30 days or lose the lien rights).  The court found that because the §34 notice required the filing of a foreclosure claim in court, taking the action did not amount to a waiver of rights under arbitration when the defendant would arguably have been forced to lose its rights if it had not filed the foreclosure claim.
  • In Winnebago County Citizens for Controlled Growth v. County of Winnebago (2nd Dist. Doc. No. 2-07-0362) the court found that a not-for-profit association may have standing to challenge the county’s decision to grant a planned community development special use permit.  Although the association was formed, arguably, in response to the development, the fact that some members may have to participate in the litigation did not preclude the association from bringing suit.  The court reversed a trial court’s decision to dismiss two counts of the association’s complaint where it found that a clearer understanding of the potential nature and involvement of certain members of the association could only be developed in litigation.

Also, we would like to take a moment to recognize that 100 years ago today one of the greatest Justices in modern times was born.  On July 2nd 1908, in Baltimore, Maryland, the once Chief Counsel to the NAACP, 2nd Circuit Judge, U.S. Solicitor General and Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall came into the world.  In honor of this event, we present this interesting article from Mary L. Dudziak published in the Spring 2008 issue of the Green Bag which is a short testament to the work Marshall did in helping to craft the Kenyan Constitution.  “Reflecting on this episode in later years, Marshall would express great satisfaction: "That, to my mind, is really working toward democracy, when you can give to the white man in Africa what you couldn't give the black man in Mississippi. It's good.”