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Carey v. City of Hastings

Supreme Court of Nebraska

December 13, 2013

Mike Carey and Becky Carey, appellees,
v.
City of Hastings, Nebraska, a municipal corporation, appellant.

Page 869

Appeal from the District Court for Adams County: STEPHEN R. ILLINGWORTH, Judge. Reversed.

Michael O. Mead, Special City Attorney, of Whelan, Scherr, Glen & Mead, P.C., L.L.O., for appellant.

Arthur R. Langvardt, of Langvardt, Valle & James, for appellees.

Robert F. Bartle, Special Assistant Attorney General, of Bartle & Geier Law Firm, for amicus curiae Nebraska Board of Engineers and Architects.

Heavican, C.J., McCormack, Miller-Lerman, and Cassel, JJ.

Syllabus by the Court

1. Administrative Law: Evidence: Appeal and Error. In reviewing the decision of an administrative board on a petition in error, both the district court and the appellate court review the decision of the board to determine whether it acted within its jurisdiction and whether the decision of the board is supported by sufficient relevant evidence. The evidence is sufficient, as a matter of law, if an administrative board could reasonably find the facts as it did on the basis of the testimony and exhibits contained in the record before it.

2. Statutes. The interpretation of statutes and regulations presents questions of law.

3. Judgments: Appeal and Error. An appellate court independently reviews questions of law decided by a lower court.

4. Jurisdiction: Words and Phrases. Subject matter jurisdiction is the power of a tribunal to hear and determine a case in the general class or category to which the proceedings in question belong and to deal with the general subject matter involved.

5. Jurisdiction: Words and Phrases. Personal jurisdiction is the power of a tribunal to subject and bind a particular person or entity to its decisions.

6. Statutes: Appeal and Error. In the absence of a statutory indication to the contrary, an appellate court gives words in a statute their ordinary meaning.

7. Administrative Law. In the absence of anything to the contrary, language

Page 870

contained in a rule or regulation is to be given its plain and ordinary meaning.

8. Administrative Law. For purposes of construction, a rule or order of an administrative agency is treated like a statute.

9. Statutes: Intent. In construing a statute, a court must look to the statutory objective to be accomplished, the evils and mischiefs sought to be remedied, and the purpose to be served. A court must then reasonably or liberally construe the statute to achieve the statute's purpose, rather than construing it in a manner that defeats the statutory purpose.

10. Appeal and Error. An appellate court is not obligated to engage in an analysis that is not necessary to adjudicate the case and controversy before it.

Cassel, J.

[287 Neb. 2] ...


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