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Dahlen v. Shelter House, No. 09-1909

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By FindLaw Staff on March 24, 2010 2:24 PM

Dahlen v. Shelter House, No. 09-1909, concerned an action claiming a violation of the Fifth Amendment's Takings Clause and requesting damages as well as an injunction to prevent the planned construction of a homeless shelter near plaintiffs' residence.  The Eighth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of the complaint, holding that, because the proposed homeless shelter met the Fifth Amendment's public purpose requirement, plaintiffs were required to seek compensation through state inverse condemnation procedures before their claim could be ripe.

As the court wrote:  "This case is the latest front in the protracted legal battle over a homeless shelter that appellee Shelter House plans to build on a plot of land adjacent to the Dahlens' property in Iowa City, Iowa. Michael and Janet Dahlen, along with Michael McNiel ("the Dahlens"), brought suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, claiming a violation of the Fifth Amendment's Takings Clause and requesting damages as well as an injunction to prevent the planned construction. Because we find that the controversy is not ripe, we affirm the district court's dismissal for lack of jurisdiction."

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