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UFBDH v. Davis County Clerk
Utah Supreme Court
175 P.3d 1036 (2007)
As part of the 2000 election, Davis County voters voted in favor of a ballot question asking whether the county should add fluoride to the public water supply. Subsequently, certain Davis County voters opposed to fluoridation circulated a petition to place the same question on the ballot for the 2002 election. The Davis County Clerk (defendant) placed the question on the 2002 ballot. Utahns For Better Dental Health-Davis, Inc. (UFBDH) (plaintiff) was a nonprofit organization that advocated for the benefits of fluoride. UFBDH sued the clerk, arguing that it was unconstitutional for him to put the revote question on the ballot. The district court ruled in favor of UFBDH, finding that placing the question on the ballot was a “misuse [of] the people’s direct legislative power.” UFBDH moved for recovery of its attorneys’ fees under the private attorney general, or common-fund exception to the American Rule. The district court denied the motion. UFBDH appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Durham, C.J.)
Dissent (Wilkins, J.)
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