Jackson Township can move ahead with its agreed-upon land swap with developer Mordy Eichorn, after an appellate court denied a stay by a plaintiff against the deal.
The land swap will preserve dozens of acres on Leesville Road in Jackson, while the township will, in exchange, give Eichorn a tract of land near Cross Street, upon which he plans to build several school buildings.
The agreement first ran into trouble when a group of neighbors who live near the Cross Street site filed a lawsuit alleging that the land swap was not valid under existing law. That lawsuit went in front of Judge Valter Must, who ruled that the agreement was in accordance with the law, and tossed the lawsuit out.
A second issue arose when Jackson sought to condemn a property near the proposed site, which its owner refused to sell. The property owner filed a lawsuit contending that Jackson didn’t have the right to condemn his property, but a judge disagreed. The resident then filed an appeal, and requested the initial judge to issue a stay in the case; the judge declined.
The resident then appealed the judge’s refusal to issue a stay, which the appeals court has now also denied, allowing the land swap agreement to move forward as planned.
The plaintiff’s original appeal is still on the docket. However, even if the appellate court would agree with him, it would not end the land swap, but would simply force Jackson Township to give him more money for his condemned property.