Tom Tueth, Margaret A. Hesse and Amy Leech Clendennen win summary judgment for Parkway School District in Missouri constitutional law case

Jun 5, 2012

Firm attorneys Tom Tueth, Margaret Hesse and Amy Clendennen succeeded in overturning a law that prohibited the Parkway School District from operating a recycling facility. The lawsuit challenged the constitutionality of a Missouri statute on the basis that the statute was “special legislation” directed at just the District.

The statute prohibited school districts that fell within a very narrowly defined class from operating a recycling facility near residential property. The Parkway School District is the only school district in the State of Missouri that fell within the classification.

The District had been operating a recycling facility for over 20 years and had received numerous commendations for their commitment to environmental stewardship. Although the District had made considerable efforts to address neighbors”™ concerns, a group of nearby residents complained to their state representative about the facility. Two state legislators then contacted the District and demanded that it shut down the facility. After the District refused to do so, the general assembly enacted legislation to prevent the District from operating the recycling facility.

On behalf of the District, Firm attorneys filed a lawsuit to have the statute declared unconstitutional. Cole County Circuit Judge Daniel Green granted summary judgment in the District’s favor on June 4, 2012, clearing the way for the District to resume operation of its recycling facility. The District had ceased operations of the recycling facility in order to comply with the law, but currently has no plans to commence operations again.

Thomas E. Tueth practices in the areas of education, higher education, labor and employment law. Tom’s experience includes representation of public school districts, community colleges, colleges and universities, private schools and not-for-profit organizations throughout Missouri. He counsels and speaks to school officials on a wide variety of topics including employment discrimination, sexual harassment, contracts and tenure, rights of students, negligence and general liability, church and state, school finance and employee organizational matters. Tom provides ongoing advice to dozens of public school districts, private schools and institutions of higher education.

Margaret A. Hesse primarily practices in the areas of education law, employment law, and litigation. She has represented school districts in employment matters, including Title VII, the Safe Schools Act, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Equal Pay Act. She has represented employers in labor matters before the United States Department of Labor/Wage and Hour Division, the Illinois Commission on Human Rights and the Illinois Educational Labor Relations board. Margaret has also represented employers in workers”™ compensation matters before the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations and has handled numerous appeals before the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission and the Missouri Court of Appeals. Margaret also has practiced in the fields of medical malpractice and legal malpractice.

Amy Leech Clendennen practices primarily in the areas of education, litigation, and labor and employment law. Amy has successfully represented school districts, colleges and universities, and private employers before State and Federal Courts and administrative agencies, including the Equal Opportunity Commission, Missouri Commission on Human Rights, and the United States Department of Education Office for Civil Rights.

The law firm of Tueth Keeney Cooper Mohan & Jackstadt, P.C. (the “Firm”), has one of the largest and most successful education law groups in the country. The Firm regularly serves the legal counsel needs of approximately 150 school districts throughout Missouri. The Firm also has one of the largest school law practices in Central and Southern Illinois.

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