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Judge: State can use Priest Lake appraisals

Wed., July 2, 2014, 7:32 a.m.

SANDPOINT - An Idaho judge says the state can use its most recent appraisals to set lease payments and minimum bids for the sale of cabin sites around Priest Lake.

A group of more than 70 lessees sued the state in April seeking to bar it from using the higher appraisal amounts. The lessees argued they had a constitutionally protected property right to renew their cottage site leases.

The Bonner County Daily Bee reports District Judge Barbara Buchanan ruled Friday that the Supreme Court has made it clear the Idaho Constitution prohibits recognition of any property right in a lease of state endowment land.

The court also ruled the state is obligated to manage the property for maximum long-term returns to the endowment’s beneficiaries, including public schools.

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