New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

VAUGHAN v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2005-009-013, Claim No. 108957, Motion No. M-69205


Synopsis


Claimant's motion seeking leave to reargue a prior motion was denied.

Case Information

UID:
2005-009-013
Claimant(s):
STEPHEN VAUGHAN
Claimant short name:
VAUGHAN
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
108957
Motion number(s):
M-69205
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
NICHOLAS V. MIDEY JR.
Claimant's attorney:
STEPHEN VAUGHAN, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER
Attorney General
BY: G. Lawrence Dillon, Esq.,
Assistant Attorney GeneralOf Counsel.
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
February 24, 2005
City:
Syracuse
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant has brought this motion pursuant to CPLR 2221 seeking leave to reargue a prior motion (Motion No. M-68306) which was denied by this Court.

The following papers were considered by the Court in connection with this motion:
Notice of Motion, Affidavit in Support, with Attachment 1,2


Defendant's Response 3

Claimant's Reply 4

In his claim, claimant seeks damages in the amount of $43.24 for the loss of certain items of his personal property occurring while claimant was incarcerated at Marcy Correctional Facility. Claimant also seeks compensation for the denial of access to his lost religious materials.

In his prior motion, claimant sought a determination from this Court as to the sufficiency of a statement which claimant had submitted with his original Bill of Particulars in lieu of a verification. In that motion, claimant also sought an order assessing monetary sanctions against defendant's attorney, arguing that the actions of the Assistant Attorney General in rejecting claimant's original Bill of Particulars for lack of a verification constituted frivolous conduct. Claimant also argued that this Assistant Attorney General tampered with the his original Bill of Particulars prior to rejecting and returning that document to claimant. By its Decision and Order dated September 7, 2004, this Court denied claimant's motion in its entirety.

A motion to reargue is governed by CPLR 2221(d), which provides that such a motion "shall be based upon matters of fact or law allegedly overlooked or misapprehended by the court in determining the prior motion, but shall not include any matters of fact not offered on the prior motion".

A motion for reargument is addressed to the discretion of the court, and is designed to afford a party an opportunity to establish that the court overlooked or misapprehended the relevant facts or misapplied the controlling principle of law (Schneider v Solowey, 141 AD2d 813; Foley v Roche, 68 AD2d 558). Its purpose is not to serve as a vehicle to permit an unsuccessful party to argue once again the very questions previously decided (Pahl Equip. Corp. v Kassis, 182 AD2d 22; Fosdick v Town of Hempstead, 126 NY 651).

As set forth in its prior Decision and Order, this Court found that since claimant had re-served his Bill of Particulars with a proper verification, his request for a determination as to the adequacy of his sworn statement attached to his original Bill of Particulars had been rendered moot. Claimant now contends that this Court was in error and that this Court should have instead construed claimant's motion as one for declaratory judgment, in that the issue of proper verification had not been rendered moot by his re-submission of a properly verified Bill of Particulars.

As a Court of limited jurisdiction, however, the Court of Claims does not have the authority to issue declaratory judgments (Wikarski v State of New York, 91 AD2d 1174; Fehlhaber Corp. v State of New York, 69 AD2d 362).[1] As a result, claimant has not set forth any factual or legal basis whatsoever for this Court to modify its original determination.

Claimant also contends that this Court was in error when it denied his application for sanctions against the defendant's attorney. In its prior Decision and Order, this Court found that there was insufficient evidence to support a finding of frivolous conduct which would justify the imposition of sanctions. In this application, claimant has not submitted any evidence that this Court overlooked or misapprehended any of the relevant facts, or that it misapplied any controlling principles of law, in making this determination.

Based on the foregoing, it is

ORDERED, that Motion No. M-69205 is hereby DENIED.


February 24, 2005
Syracuse, New York

HON. NICHOLAS V. MIDEY JR.
Judge of the Court of Claims




[1] In a limited set of circumstances not relevant herein, and pursuant to specific legislative authority, the Court of Claims does have jurisdiction to render a declaratory judgment with respect to issues involving the obligation of an insurer to indemnify or defend a defendant in actions commenced in this Court (Court of Claims Act § 9[9-a]).