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Monday, May 19, 2014

City Can Enforce Administrative Adjudication Order in Court

The Illinois Municipal Code authorizes home rule municipalities to establish administrative adjudication hearing programs to adjudication ordinance violations.  The Village of Lake in the Hills used its program to find the defendant in violation of a variety of municipal ordinances and assessed fines.  The Village also sought to enforce the hearing officer's orders in the circuit court. The court denied the Village's petitions, however, finding no statutory authority for a Village to enforce a hearing officer's order in circuit court.  

On appeal, the appellate court ruled in favor of the Village in Village of Lake in the Hills v. Dennis Niklaus (May 15, 2014).  The court determined that Division 2.1 of the Illinois Municipal Code provides that the order of a hearing officer "may be enforced in the same manner as a judgment entered by a court of competent jurisdiction." The process that the Village used to enforce the hearing officer's orders in this case (filing petitions to enforce the hearing officer's orders with the circuit court, accompanied by certified copies of the administrative orders) was proper. As a result, the court reversed the circuit court's decision, finding that a home rule municipality has authority to enforce hearing officer decisions in the circuit court.

Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf, Ancel Glink


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