Missouri High Court Considers Sunshine Law in SeMo Zoning Dispute

MAY 11, 2004 - Posted at 11:15 a.m. CDT

JEFFERSON CITY, MO - Missouri's Sunshine Law has become an issue in a Supreme Court case over a land dispute in Sikeston.

The lawsuit was brought by property owners opposed to the nearby construction of a county health clinic.

They claim the city council violated the open meetings law when it adopted a 2001 rezoning ordinance, without properly mentioning the ordinance in its meeting notice and minutes.

A year after the lawsuit was filed, the city repealed the original ordinance and enacted a new one.  An attorney for the city told the Supreme Court today that the repeal made the lawsuit moot.

But an attorney for the landowners still wants a declaration that the city violated the Sunshine Law, which could lead to civil penalties and an assessment for attorney fees.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)