Subject Matter Jurisdiction – Taxpayer Standing
Richardson v. Relf, [Ms. 1170559, May 4, 2018] __ So. 3d __ (Ala. 2018). This decision by Justice Main (Parker, J., concurring; Stuart, C.J., and Bolin, Wise, Sellers, and Mendheim, JJ., concur specially) vacates an order of the Montgomery Circuit Court enjoining the sale of George Washington Middle School by the Montgomery County Board of Education. The Court reiterated recent authority that “‘to have standing to bring an action, the plaintiff must have an interest in the outcome of the action and show that he or she has suffered or imminently will suffer an injury.’” Ms. *17, quoting Ingle v. Adkins, [Ms. 1160671, Nov. 9, 2017], __ So. 3d. __, ___ (Ala. 2017). The Court held:
A taxpayer has standing to challenge the unlawful disbursement of public funds that he or she is liable to replenish through the payment of taxes. In the present case, because the sale of George Washington Middle School would bring money into the public treasury that tax-paying residents of Montgomery County are responsible for replenishing, tax-paying residents of Montgomery County do not have standing as taxpayers to challenge the sale.
Because the plaintiffs did not have standing to bring the present action, the trial court never acquired subject matter jurisdiction over this case.