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Sheila L. Bishop v. Greystone Properties

April 1, 2011

SHEILA L. BISHOP,
PLAINTIFF,
1085 WARBURTON AVENUE OWNERS. INC., ON BEHALF OF THE CORPORATION AND SHAREHOLDERS, INTERVENOR PLAINTIFF,
v.
GREYSTONE PROPERTIES, LLC., VELOCITY AT GREYSTONE, LLC., ERIK KAISER, KENDRA PISARRA, GEORGE YERRALL, STEPHEN DENARDO, CRWB, LLC AS ASSIGNEE OF WRIGHTWOOD CAPITAL LENDER, LLC., JAMES VENERUSO, AS COURT APPOINTED RECEIVER, REMI RIVER OAK LLC., RIVER OAK, LLC., REMI GREYSTONE LLC., ASHLEY REMI, INC., ARICS, INC., REMI CONSTRUCTION, P. B. MARKOVIC, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EMPLOYEE OF REMI CONSTRUCTION, P. B. MARKOVIC PROJECT MANAGEMENT, CITY OF YONKERS, BOB CIAMARRA, JAMES HANNIGAN AND MATT FOLEY IN THEIR OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS EMPLOYEES OF THE CITY OF YONKERS DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND BUILDINGS, JOSEPH MORAN IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS COMMISSIONER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF ENGINEERING OF THE CITY OF YONKERS AND JOHN MEYER IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS COMMISSIONER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND BUILDINGS OF THE CITY OF YONKERS,
DEFENDANTS.



OPINION

This is an action brought by plaintiff, Sheila L. Bishop, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 to recover compensatory and punitive damages for the deprivation of her constitutional rights by the City of Yonkers and its employees ("City defendants"). Bishop also brings state law claims against Yonkers, its employees, and other private actors. Intervenor plaintiff, 1085 Warburton Avenue Owners, Inc. ("the Co-op"), asserts similar claims against the same defendants as Bishop, and adds one additional city official as well as certain private actors in its § 1983 claim.

The complaints stem from ongoing problems at a high-rise construction site ("the Development") located between Bishop's and the Co-op's properties.

Defendants move pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6) to dismiss both the amended complaint and the intervenor plaintiff complaint. Some defendants have also moved pursuant 42 U.S.C. § 1988 to recover attorneys' fees from the Co-op.

Because plaintiffs do not allege a violation of a recognized constitutional or statutory right, their 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims must be dismissed. Without that basis of federal jurisdiction, plaintiffs' remaining claims are dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Defendants' motion against the Co-op for attorneys' fees is denied.

THE COMPLAINTS

The following facts relate only to the 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims against the City defendants, are taken from the amended and intervenor complaints, and, for the purposes of these motions, are assumed to be true.

The Parties

Bishop is a resident of New York who owns and previously resided at a residence located at 1063 Warburton Avenue in Yonkers, New York. Bishop's residence is adjacent to the south side of the Development.

The Co-op is a residential cooperative made up of members who own apartments in a building located at 1085 Warburton Avenue in Yonkers. The Co-op's building is adjacent to the north side of the Development.

Yonkers is a municipal corporation organized under the laws of the State of New York.

Defendants Bob Ciamara, James Hannigan, Matt Foley, and John Meyer are employees of Yonkers' Department of Housing and Building. Joseph Moran is an employee of the Yonkers' Department of Engineering.

Jurisdiction

Both Bishop and the Co-op claim federal subject-matter jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1331 via their federal claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Both also claim 28 U.S.C. § 1367 supplemental jurisdiction over their remaining claims.

Factual Allegations

This case centers on an ongoing development project at 1077 Warburton Avenue in Yonkers. Warburton Avenue runs in a north-south direction just to the east of the Hudson River. Just to the west of the portion of Warburton Avenue where the Development is located, the terrain slopes sharply downward to the Hudson River. Bishop is the Development's southern neighbor and the Co-op building is the Development's northern ...


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