procuring for them a surer-footed reading of applicable law." Id. at 726. The Court also stated that "some have seen this consideration as the principal argument against exercising of pendent jurisdiction," noting that one judge had counseled that "federal courts should not be over-eager to hold on to the determination of issues that might be more appropriately pressed to settlement in state court litigation." Id. at 726 n.15.
Plaintiffs apparently dispute defendants' assertion that the application of the state laws in the instant case involves novel questions as they believe it is clear from the language of the statutes in question that the defendants' conduct is violative of the state provisions. Plaintiffs, however, have not cited any authority on point that addresses the state questions at issue here. Thus, while it is true that the federal and state claims arise out of the same operative set of facts and will probably involve virtually the same proof at trial, this court, in its discretion, chooses to decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over all of the state law claims, including the claim under Article 78. As asserted by the defendants, there is no reason for this court to embroil itself in a dispute between the State and a local government and to make this novel and potentially extremely significant interpretation of state law. See Fay v. South Colonie Cent. School Dist., 802 F.2d 21, 31 (2d Cir. 1986) (District Court need not decide the pendent claim due to the presence of unresolved questions under New York State law); Independent Bankers Ass'n of N.Y. State, Inc. v. Marine Midland Bank, N.A., 757 F.2d 453 (2d Cir. 1985) (The Second Circuit questioned the district court's wisdom of adjudicating a state law question in federal court before any New York State court had passed on it.), cert. denied, 476 U.S. 1186, 91 L. Ed. 2d 554, 106 S. Ct. 2926 91986).
While Support Ministries argues that supplemental jurisdiction should be retained in the interests of judicial economy and the expeditious resolution of all issues relating to this case, "the judicial economy factor should not be the controlling factor. . . ." Kidder, Peabody & Co. v. Maxus Energy Corp., 925 F.2d 556, 564 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 115 L. Ed. 2d 998, 111 S. Ct. 2829 (1991). "A district court should refrain from 'reaching out for . . . issues, thereby depriving state courts of opportunities to develop and apply state law. . . .'" Id. (quoting Mayer v. Oil Field Sys. Corp., 803 F.2d 749, 757 (2d Cir. 1986)).
Furthermore, this court notes that in a case management plan recently filed and signed by all parties, it is stated that it is possible that following discovery, either plaintiffs or defendants will conclude that no triable issues of fact remain and that summary judgment is appropriate. In cases which are decided without trial on motions for summary judgment, the Second Circuit has expressed that it has even less concern about judicial economy where there are novel state law questions presented. Independent Bankers Ass'n, 757 F.2d at 464-65 (citing Financial Gen. Bank Shares, Inc. v. Metzger, 680 F.2d 768, 778 (D.C. Cir. 1982)). The court stated that in such a case the plaintiffs can refile their state law complaint in state court, using the same documents in support of their federal court case. Id. In addition, the Second Circuit has instructed that "federal courts, absent exceptional circumstances, should abstain from exercising pendent jurisdiction when federal claims in a case can be disposed of by summary judgment. . . ." Walker v. Time Life Films, Inc., 784 F.2d 44, 53 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 476 U.S. 1159, 90 L. Ed. 2d 721, 106 S. Ct. 2278 91986). The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has also stated that dismissal of the state law claims under such circumstances is "recommended." Coalition Against Columbus Ctr. v. City of N.Y., 750 F. Supp. 93, 96 (S.D.N.Y. 1990), rev'd in pt. on other grounds, aff'd in pt., 967 F.2d 764 (2d Cir.1992) (affirmed judgment granting summary judgment to the defendants on the pendent claims for the reasons set forth in the District Court's opinion); Kaplan v. Shapiro, 655 F. Supp. 336, 342 (S.D.N.Y. 1987). This court does not believe that exceptional circumstances are present in the instant case.
WHEREFORE, for the foregoing reasons, it is hereby
ORDERED, that defendants' motion to dismiss the claims brought by plaintiffs People of the State of New York by Robert Abrams, Attorney General of the State of New York, and Mary Jo Bane as Commissioner of the New York State Department of Social Services, due to lack of standing is denied, and it is further
ORDERED, that defendants' motion to dismiss the pendent state law claims is granted.
DATED: July 30, 1992
Albany, New York
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