Dodge County Enters Into Class Action Lawsuit Over Federal Reimbursement

(Juneau) Dodge County will be joining a class action lawsuit against the federal government. The county board’s executive committee gave the go ahead Tuesday to be part of a suit filed by Kane County in Utah with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Dodge County Corporation Counsel Kimberly Nass says Kane County has federal land that did not receive its full payments in lieu in taxes due to congress not fully funding the U.S. Department of Interior dating back to 2015. Nass says certain areas of the Horicon Marsh qualify the county to be part of the class action lawsuit as only parts are federal land with the rest belonging to the state. With the executive committee’s authorization, an online form will be completed indicating the county’s interest to participate which must be completed by September 14. The lawsuit does include participation from county’s nation-wide. Nass says the region could see a return of anywhere from $100 to $80,000 if the suit is successful. She says the Department of Interior did make their payments in lieu of taxes from 2015 through 2017 to Dodge County but was not the full amount according to the statutory formula. Nass says Dodge County’s participation would be limited to providing information to the law firm that is handling the suit and does not believe that county would need to testify. She says it is difficult to say how quickly the lawsuit will move forward but will be providing updates to the county board if any new information arises.