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|202 NORTH MONROE, LLC,
CITY OF ROCKFORD,
CALEB SOWER; KRISTINE SOWER; LARRY VIS; ELSIE
WAYMAN; JIM JENNELLE; SUSIE JENNELLE; DALE
GOOSSEN; LINDA GOOSSEN; JACK MCCLENNEN; AMY
HADLEY; NEIGHBORS FOR NEIGHBORHOOD, INC.,
FRED HAACK; ANGIE HAACK; KENNETH E. PHILLIPS;
TROY WINTERS; MICHELLE WINTERS,
| No. 16-1982|
Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Western District of Michigan at Grand Rapids.
No. 1:16-cv-00325—Janet T. Neff, District Judge.
Argued: February 2, 2017
Decided and Filed: March 1, 2017
Before: GIBBONS, COOK, and KETHLEDGE, Circuit Judges.
JULIA SMITH GIBBONS, Circuit Judge. After the City of Rockford (the City) failed to
approve a zoning petition for property owned by 202 North Monroe, LLC (202 North Monroe),
the developer sued, challenging the constitutionality of the zoning-approval process. After a
number of individuals living in the vicinity of the proposed development attempted and were
denied the opportunity to intervene in the litigation, the City and 202 North Monroe settled their
dispute and a federal district court entered a consent judgment under which the City agreed to
rezone the property and 202 North Monroe agreed to address several environmental issues.
Disappointed with this result, the proposed intervenors, other residents, and a local
neighborhood association (collectively the Neighbors) sued 202 North Monroe and the City in
state court, seeking a declaration that the City failed to comply with Michigan law when it
approved the settlement agreement. 202 North Monroe and the City (now collectively plaintiffs)
responded by filing this action in federal district court to enjoin the state proceeding as an
improper attack on the prior consent judgment. The district court dismissed the case for lack of
jurisdiction and the City now appeals. Although the district court could have exercised ancillary
jurisdiction over the latter federal suit, we affirm the dismissal of plaintiffs’ complaint because
the Anti-Injunction Act bars a federal court from enjoining the Neighbors’ state-court action.