|In 2008, Congress significantly amended the PILT statute by mandating full funding through 2014 and removing language that limited the federal government’s payment obligation to the amounts appropriated by Congress. Congress has never reinserted that language. For 2015-17, because of insufficient appropriations, PILT recipients did not receive the full amount to which they were entitled under the PILT statute based on the U.S. Department of the Interior’s full payment calculation. Kane County, Utah filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, seeking to recover its own underpayments and the underpayments of a class made up of all other PILT recipients in those years.|
Several months ago, the Court ruled in Kane County’s favor and certified the lawsuit as a class action. The Court also named Smith Currie & Hancock, LLP, Kane County’s lawyers, as Class Counsel to represent all members of the class. The Court ordered that an official Notice of these events be sent to each underpaid PILT recipient. That Notice will be mailed on June 19 to all PILT recipients.
If you wish to view the Notice before it arrives in the mail, please visit Class Counsel’s website, www.Smithcurrie.com/PILTPaymentsInfo (Note: website will go live on Friday, June 15) where you will find a link to the Notice—plus copies of Court orders, FAQs about the lawsuit and a form for submitting questions to Class Counsel. If you do not receive the Notice in the mail by the end of next week, you should go to the above website and inform Class Counsel.
The Notice explains that to participate in the class action lawsuit, and collect the amounts due to them through the class action lawsuit, each underpaid PILT recipient must complete and submit a form “opting into” the lawsuit. If you do not submit the form, you will not be included in the class action lawsuit—and will not receive what would otherwise be your share of any monies recovered.
Additionally, NACo is scheduling a conference call with the Class Counsel on June 19 at 3 p.m. EDT. All PILT recipients and state associations of counties are invited to join that call, where Alan Saltman from Smith, Currie & Hancock, LLP will be available to answer any questions.
|PILT Lawsuit Conference Call |
Jonathan Shuffield, NACo; and Alan Saltman, Smith, Currie & Hancock, LLP (Class Counsel)
Call Date: Tuesday, June 19
3 p.m. EDT
Dial-In: (719) 457-0816