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I recently acted as lead counsel for Madison Highlands, a developer of residential apartment communities, arguing its case against Florida Housing Finance Corp. before the 5th District Court of Appeal in Daytona Beach.

Gunster attorney Ken BellAs a result of our arguments, the court issued an important administrative law decision on Feb. 24, 2017. This ruling represents a significant victory for those involved in public competitive solicitations.

At issue in Madison Highlands LLC. v. Florida Housing Finance Corp. (5D16-1035) was Florida Housing’s refusal to let a lower-ranked applicant challenge its ranking – instead of accepting the well-plead allegations that the higher-ranked applicants did not qualify and referring the matter for an administrative hearing as required. In so doing, Florida Housing asserted my client lacked standing to challenge its ranking and dismissed the petition with prejudice.

In a short but well-reasoned decision, the 5th DCA protected a competitive bidder’s right to due process and the substantive rights to the agency’s ranking reviewed in an adversarial proceeding.


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