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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:The city of Tyler filed a petition of condemnation against property owned by Susan and Timothy Beck. A panel of special commissioners found the Becks should receive $45,816. The city filed objections to the award, but it did not serve the Becks with citation, as required by Property Code 21.018(b). The Becks filed their objections to the award, but they, too, did not serve the city with citation. Nine months later, the Becks filed a special appearance, a plea to the jurisdiction and a motion to dismiss. They claimed that if the objecting party (the city) fails to secure service of citation within a reasonable time, the trial court should dismiss for want of jurisdiction and reinstate the special commissioners’ award. The trial court granted the motion and reinstated the $45,816 award. The city’s motions for new trial and for a reinstatement of the original ruling were overruled by operation of law. HOLDING:Affirmed. The court finds that the filing of objections, coupled with service of citation on the adverse party signals the end of an administrative proceeding to set adequate compensation in a condemnation case, and prevents reinstatement of a special commissioners’ award. Without the service of citation, the condemnation remains an administrative proceeding. If the objecting party fails to secure service of citation on the other party within a reasonable period of time, the trial court should dismiss the objections for want of prosecution, and should also reinstate the special commissioners’ award, according to State v. Ellison, 788 S.W.2d 868 (Tex. App.-Houston [1st Dist.] 1990, writ denied). In this case, neither party had been served in the manner required by 21.018(b), so the commissioners’ award should have been reinstated. The court rejects the city’s argument that the Becks submitted to the trial court’s jurisdiction when they filed their objections: ” . . . service of citation is the key to a condemnation being transformed from an administrative proceeding to a civil case to be decided in a court of law.” OPINION:Worthen, C.J. Worthen, Griffith and DeVasto, JJ.

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