Statutes. Statutory interpretation presents
a question of law.
Judgments: Jurisdiction: Appeal and Error.
Determination of a juris-dictional issue which does not
involve a factual dispute is a matter of law which requires
an appellate court to reach its conclusions independent from
a trial court.
Trial: Appeal and Error. The standard of
review of a trial court's determination of a request for
sanctions is whether the trial court abused its discretion.
Actions: Waiver: Appeal and Error. Under the
law-of-the-case doctrine, a well-recognized waiver rule has
emerged: A decision made at a previous stage of litigation,
which could have been challenged in the ensuing appeal but
was not, becomes the law of the case; the parties are deemed
to have waived the right to challenge that decision.
Actions: Appeal and Error. When an appellate
court remands a case to an inferior tribunal, the
law-of-the-case doctrine prevents that court from taking
action inconsistent with the judgment of the appellate court.
Trial: Judgments: Pleadings. A trial court,
in its discretion, may permit the renewal and resubmission of
a motion which has previously been overruled.
Courts: Judgments: Time. No court is
required to persist in error, and, if the court concludes
that a former ruling was wrong, the court may correct it at
any time while the case is still in the court's control.
Statutes: Appeal and Error. Statutory
language is to be given its plain and ordinary meaning, and
an appellate court will not resort to interpretation to
ascertain the meaning of statutory words which are plain,
direct, and unambiguous.
Eminent Domain: Jurisdiction: Notice: Appeal and
Error. In a condemnation action, only the filing of
the notice of appeal and, by extension, service of this
notice is jurisdictional.
Neb. 298] 10. Courts: Judgments:
Pleadings: Appeal and Error. Under Neb. Rev. Stat.
§ 76-717 (Reissue 2018), only where it becomes necessary
for a district court to order an appealing party to file a
petition on appeal does it also become necessary for the
court to impose such sanctions as are reasonable. In crafting
a reasonable sanction, a court should consider the
circumstances and any resulting prejudice to other parties.
Actions: Attorney Fees: Words and Phrases.
Under Neb. Rev. Stat. § 25-824(4) (Reissue 2016), the
term "frivolous" connotes an improper motive or
legal position so wholly without merit as to be ridiculous.
from the District Court for Sarpy County: George A. Thompson,
Judge. Affirmed in part, and in part reversed and remanded
for further proceedings.
M. Bruno and James L. Schneider, of Sherrets, Bruno &
Vogt, L.L.C., for appellant.
J. Fischer and Julie A. Ward, of Koley Jessen, PC, L.L.O.,
and Karla R. Rupiper, Papillion City Attorney, and Amber L.
Rupiper for appellee.
Heavican, C.J., Cassel, Stacy, Funke, Papik, and Freudenberg,
City of Papillion, Nebraska (Papillion), condemned land owned
by Pinnacle Enterprises, Inc. (Pinnacle). Pinnacle appealed
the award to district court. After 41/2
years and one judicial recusal, the court dismissed the
appeal for lack of jurisdiction. Because the plain language
of Neb. Rev. Stat. § 76-717 (Reissue 2018) confers
jurisdiction once a notice of appeal is filed, the court
erred in dismissing the appeal and we reverse that dismissal.
But the court did not abuse its discretion in denying
Pinnacle's motion for sanctions relating to
Papillion's motion for summary judgment, and we affirm
much of this appeal centers upon the meaning of §
76-717, we quote it in full:
[302 Neb. 299] Within thirty days after the filing of such
notice of appeal, the county judge shall prepare and transmit
to the clerk of the district court a duly certified
transcript of all proceedings had concerning the parcel or
parcels of land as to which the particular condemnee takes
the appeal upon payment of the fees provided by law for
preparation thereof. When notice of appeal is filed by both
the condemner and the condemnee, such transcript shall be
prepared only in response to the first notice of appeal. The
transcript prepared in response to the second notice of
appeal shall contain only a copy of such notice and the
proceedings shall be filed in the district court as a single
cause of action.
The filing of the notice of appeal shall confer jurisdiction
on the district court. The first party to perfect an appeal
shall file a petition on appeal in the district court within
fifty days after the filing of the notice of appeal. If no
petition is filed, the court shall direct the first party to
perfect an appeal to file a petition and impose such
sanctions as are reasonable. The appeal shall be tried de
novo in the district court. Such appeal shall not delay the
acquisition of the property and placing of same to a public
use if the condemner shall first deposit with the county
judge the amount assessed by the appraisers.
§ 76-717 was amended in 2018,  the amendment did not change
any of the language relevant to this appeal and for
convenience, we quote the current statute.
initiated condemnation proceedings in the county court. An
amended return of the appraisers' award was entered on
July 23, 2013. On ...