April 17, 2017

Recently, Law360 reported a ruling by a Texas Appellate court who sided with Partners Michael Shaunessy and Eric Johnston’s client, Guadalupe County, in a matter where Woodlake Partners Inc. alleged property value damages caused by the County’s adoption of a flood damage prevention court order in response to FEMA's revisions to a 100-year old flood map. The court held that Guadalupe County was not liable because it did not proximately cause any damages of which the plaintiff complained.  The San Antonio Court of Appeals held that it was not the acts of the county that damaged the value of lots Woodlake was planning to build on, but the Federal Emergency Management Agency's revisions to the flood plain maps.

“They were going to have the same problems,” Shaunessy said, explaining whether the county adopted the order had no bearing on FEMA's actions. “They weren't going to be able to develop.”

This opinion will be critically important for local governmental entities as FEMA continues to review floodplain maps. 

The full article can be found (subscription required): https://www.law360.com/articles/912888/texas-panel-grants-county-win-in-fema-flood-map-row

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