Bingham v. Jefferson County et al
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER The Court will not rule on Jefferson County's Motion for Reconsideration (Dkt. 31 ) at this time. Jefferson County shall have 30 days from the date of this decision to submit a second motion for summary judgment. T he traditional briefing scheduled shall apply and the Court will set a hearing for oral argument if necessary. Signed by Judge David C. Nye. (caused to be mailed to non Registered Participants at the addresses listed on the Notice of Electronic Filing (NEF) by (jp)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF IDAHO
Case No. 4:15-cv-00245-DCN
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND
Pending before the Court is Jefferson County’s Motion for Reconsideration.1 Dkt.
31. For the reasons set forth below, the Court will allow Jefferson County to file a second
Motion for Summary Judgment in order to address new issues improperly raised in the
Motion for Reconsideration. This is a more appropriate vehicle to assert these issues and
will allow Plaintiff Casey Bingham a more complete opportunity to respond.
Jefferson County moved for summary judgment on all counts on May 26, 2016.
Dkt. 12. The Court heard oral argument on September 25, 2017, and took the matter
under advisement. On September 29, 2017, in its Memorandum Decision and Order (Dkt.
30), the Court dismissed Count I (the Whistleblower claim) as untimely, but found
Jefferson County’s Motion is entitled “Motion for Relief from the Court’s Memorandum
Decision and Order [Dkt. 30].”
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER - 1
sufficient controverted facts existed in regards to Counts II, III, and IV to survive
Jefferson County now asks the Court to revisit its ruling on Counts II and IV.
Jefferson County argues that the Court erred in some respects, but also puts forth new and
arguments in favor of its position. Bingham takes issue with the form of Jefferson
County’s Motion as well as the substance. 2
Jefferson County believes the Court erred in its analysis and decision to allow
Counts II, III, and IV to remain after summary judgment. Jefferson County’s main
concern is error on the Court’s part; however, it also alleges that Bingham has not
sufficiently pled a Monell3 claim as it relates to her federal causes of action in Counts II
and IV. If the Court were to dismiss Counts II and IV, only Count III—a state law
claim—would remain, over which Jefferson County urges the Court not to exercise
The Court notes that this Monell argument was not brought to the Court’s attention
in a motion to dismiss, or even in Jefferson County’s Motion for Summary Judgment, but
rather only recently as part of the pending Motion for Reconsideration. As Bingham
Bingham argues that this Motion is not only improper because it is not a final judgment which
can be reconsidered, but, because Jefferson County proffers new arguments in its briefing, this
motion is essentially a “renewed” or second motion for summary judgment.
Monell v. Dep't of Soc. Servs. of City of New York, 436 U.S. 658, 98 S. Ct. 2018 (1978). A
Monell claim is a due process, or 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim, against a municipality.
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER - 2
correctly notes, this argument was available to Jefferson County when it filed its Motion
for Summary Judgment and failing to raise the issue earlier now seems like a waiver, or
at the very least, a second bite at the apple.
The above aside, this Monell issue does appear relevant and the Court must
address what bearing it has on this case. The Court however will not do so as a motion to
reconsider. Each party deserves an adequate opportunity to brief and respond to this
important, and possibly dispositive, topic and although both parties mention it in the
briefing, due consideration must be given in a procedurally proper avenue.4 Additionally,
the Court will not take up the other issues raised by Jefferson County in its Motion at this
time, but will do so as one decision after the parties have fully briefed the Monell issue.
The Court normally does not allow multiple motions for summary judgment but
for reasons now apparent, the Court will permit a second motion for summary judgment
on the limited issue of Monell.
Jefferson County shall have 30 days from the issuance of this order in which to
file their motion. The traditional briefing schedule will follow.
Also, were the Court to rule in Jefferson County’s favor on the Monell issue, and Bingham
wanted to appeal that decision, Bingham would be appealing a motion to reconsider which by its
nature is already a motion “appealing” the Court’s determination on summary judgment. To
avoid this, the Court will allow Jefferson County to raise this issue in a second Motion for
Summary Judgment. The parties are free to repeat anything used in the briefing of the current
Motion as it relates to Monell. In addition, the Court would like more analysis as to how the legal
standards in Monell, as well the topic of ratification (Bingham’s main defense), relate to the facts
of this particular case.
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER - 3
1. The Court will not rule on Jefferson County’s Motion for Reconsideration (Dkt.
31) at this time.
2. Jefferson County shall have 30 days from the date of this decision to submit a
second motion for summary judgment. The traditional briefing scheduled shall
apply and the Court will set a hearing for oral argument if necessary.
DATED: January 9, 2018
David C. Nye
U.S. District Court Judge
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER - 4
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