PONTCHARTRAIN NATURAL GAS SYSTEM v. TEXAS BRINE COMPANY LLC (2023)
Court of Appeal of Louisiana, First Circuit.
PONTCHARTRAIN NATURAL GAS SYSTEM, k/d/s Promix, L.L.C., and Acadian Gas Pipeline System v. TEXAS BRINE COMPANY, LLC
DOCKET NUMBER 2022 CA 0807
Decided: May 19, 2023
BEFORE: WELCH, HOLDRIDGE, and GREENE, JJ.
Leopold Z. Sher, James M. Garner, Peter L. Hilbert, Jr., Christopher T. Chocheles, New Orleans, Louisiana, Travis J. Turner, Gonzales, Louisiana, Ulysses Gene Thibodeaux, Lake Charles, Louisiana, Attorneys for Appellant, Texas Brine Company, LLC Roy C. Cheatwood, Kent A. Lambert, Adam B. Zuckerman, Leopoldo J. Yanez, Matthew C. Juneau, Lauren Brink Adams, New Orleans, Louisiana, Attorneys for Appellee, Legacy Vulcan, LLC
This dispute is one of many arising out of the August 3, 2012 sinkhole that appeared near Bayou Come in Assumption Parish, Louisiana. In this appeal, Texas Brine Company, LLC challenges a January 18, 2022 judgment granting Legacy Vulcan's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment Dismissing Texas Brine's Claims for Double Recovery of Insured Losses and Liabilities. After review, we dismiss the appeal and remand the matter to the trial court.
In a related appeal, this court recently considered an identical judgment rendered by the same trial court, on the same day, but in a different docket number, i.e., Twenty-Third Judicial District Court Docket No. 34,202. See Crosstex Energy Services, LP v. Texas Brine Company, LLC, 22-0832 (La. App. 1 Cir. 3/16/23), ––– So.3d ––––, 2023 WL 2531238 (Crosstex 0832). The judgment at issue in Crosstex 0832 also granted Legacy Vulcan's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment Dismissing Texas Brine's Claims for Double Recovery of Insured Losses and Liabilities and was also certified as final under La. C.C.P. art. 1915(B). The Crosstex 0832 Court dismissed the appeal, based on a lack of subject matter jurisdiction, because the judgment therein did not meet the requirements of an appealable judgment under La. C.C.P. art. 1915(B) and R.J. Messinger, Inc. v. Rosenblum, 04-1664 (La. 3/2/05), 894 So.2d 1113, 1122. Crosstex 0832, ––– So.3d at –––– – ––––, 2022 WL 2531238 at *4-5.1
After a thorough review of the record, we find no material distinction between the judgment and issues presented in this appeal and those presented in Crosstex 0832. For the reasons set forth in Crosstex 0832, we conclude the January 18, 2022 judgment herein does not meet the requirements of a final appealable judgment under La. C.C.P. art. 1915(B) and Messinger. Therefore, we lack subject matter jurisdiction over this appeal.
We hereby dismiss the appeal and remand the matter to the trial court for further proceedings. We issue this summary disposition in accordance with Uniform Rules - Courts of Appeal, Rule 2-16.2(A)(1), (2), (4), and (6). We assess costs of this appeal equally between Texas Brine Company, LLC and Legacy Vulcan, LLC.
MOTION TO REMAND DENIED; APPEAL DISMISSED; CASE REMANDED.2
1. After Crosstex 0832 was decided, this court decided Florida Gas Transmission Company, LLC v. Texas Brine Company, LLC, 22-1036 (La. App. 1 Cir. 4/18/23), ––– So.3d ––––, 2023 WL 2985097 (Florida Gas 1036), and again considered another identical judgment by the same trial court, on the same day, in a third trial court docket number, i.e., Twenty-Third JDC Docket No. 34,316. As did the Crosstex 0832 Court before it, the Florida Gas 1036 Court dismissed Texas Brine's appeal.
2. In light of this opinion and the parties' appearance at oral argument, we deny as moot Texas Brine's February 8, 2023 Motion to Remand Issues Presented by this Appeal and Cancel Oral Argument Due to Improvident Granting of Article 1915(B) Certification, that was filed with this Court.
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