Airport wouldn’t land his personal jet

From “Decision of the Day: A daily summary of the best (and worst) of federal appellate decisions” (Jul. 3):

Money Can’t Buy Love, Or Permission to Land Your Personal Jet
Tutor-Saliba Corp. v. Hailey, 04-34524 [PDF](9th Cir., July 3, 2006)

Poor Ron Tutor. All he wanted to do is land his personal jet at an airport in Hailey, Idaho. The airport wouldn’t let him due to weight restrictions, so he was forced to fly in a less comfortable private jet. As a result, Tutor’s vacation at his Sun Valley home got off to a very bad start. Tutor sued the airport and the City of Hailey on various grounds, including under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for allegedly violating his rights to due process, equal protection, and interstate travel. The district court predictably found these claims were frivolous and awarded partial fees to the defendants, totaling $88,000 (in addition to costs of around $70,000). On appeal, the Ninth affirms the decision to award fees but remands to the district court for recalculation. Am I the only one who hopes the district court finds a way to increase the fee award on remand?

“Decision of the Day”, incidentally, was launched by “Robert Loblaw” in October, and can be found here.

P.S.: In email, Prof. Childs advises that site author “Robert Loblaw” quite possibly may have borrowed that screen name from a similarly named lawyer-character on “Arrested Development”, who can be viewed here.