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Douglas County Judge Issues Temporary Restraining Order on Eminent Domain Proceedings


A temporary restraining order was issued by Douglas County District Judge Peter Bataillon against the county in order to put the eminent domain process that would allow it to seize architect Bob Perrin’s building on hold. Perrin, represented by Domina Law Group attorney David Domina, argued that the county lacks the standing necessary to use eminent domain authority to require him to sell his property to the county.

In Perrin’s lawsuit, filed on Monday, September 17, he argues that the City of Omaha would need to approve eminent domain action, and that it would need to be pursued by the Omaha-Douglas Public Building Commission rather than the county itself. In addition to issuing the temporary restraining order, Judge Batallion informed Perrin that he would have to allow relocation experts, an environmental assessment team, and a court-appointed panel of appraisers to inspect his property in order to set a price. Perrin reportedly allowed the team onto his property on Tuesday.

Once the inspection is complete and a price is set, if the county is allowed to continue the eminent domain process they will have the ability to submit a check for the set value and receive its title. If this is allowed, the county intends to demolish the building in order to build a new youth detention center and courthouse annex. The county initially offered Perrin $900,000 to buy his property, but he declined, stating that he would like to preserve and renovate his building.

According to Domina, the temporary restraining order means that while the appraisers can complete their initial inspection, they cannot set a price for 10 days, or until a hearing can be conducted.

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