113A-123. Judicial review.

(a) Any person directly affected by any final decision or order of the Commission under this Part may appeal such decision or order to the superior court of the county where the land or any part thereof is located, pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes. Pending final disposition of any appeal, no action shall be taken which would be unlawful in the absence of a permit issued under this Part.

(b) Any person having a recorded interest or interest by operation of law in or registered claim to land within an area of environmental concern affected by any final decision or order of the Commission under this Part may, within 90 days after receiving notice thereof, petition the superior court to determine whether the petitioner is the owner of the land in question, or an interest, therein, and in case he is adjudged the owner of the subject land, or an interest therein, the court shall determine whether such order so restricts the use of his property as to deprive him of the practical uses thereof, being not otherwise authorized by law, and is therefore an unreasonable exercise of the police power because the order constitutes the equivalent of taking without compensation. The burden of proof shall be on petitioner as to ownership and the burden of proof shall be on the Commission to prove that the order is not an unreasonable exercise of the police power, as aforesaid. Either party shall be entitled to a jury trial on all issues of fact, and the court shall enter a judgment in accordance with the issues, as to whether the Commission order shall apply to the land of the petitioner. The Secretary shall cause a copy of such finding to be recorded forthwith in the register of deeds office in the county where the land is located. The method provided in this subsection for the determination of the issue of whether such order constitutes a taking without compensation shall be exclusive and such issue shall not be determined in any other proceeding. Any action authorized by this subsection shall be calendared for trial at the next civil session of superior court after the summons and complaint have been served for 30 days, regardless of whether issues were joined more than 10 days before the session. It is the duty of the presiding judge to expedite the trial of these actions and to give them a preemptory setting over all others, civil or criminal. From any decision of the superior court either party may appeal to the court of appeals as a matter of right.

(c) After a finding has been entered that such order shall not apply to certain land as provided in the preceding subsection, the Department of Administration, upon the request of the Commission and upon finding that sufficient funds are available therefor, and with the consent of the Governor and Council of State may take the fee or any lesser interest in such land in the name of the State by eminent domain under the provisions of Chapter 146 of the General Statutes and hold the same for the purposes set forth in this Article. (1973, c. 1284, s. 1; c. 1331, s. 3; 1977, c. 771, s. 4; 1987, c. 827, s. 1; 1989, c.727, s. 134.)