MICHAEL M. SELLERS, Plaintiff-Appellant,
INTERSTATE POWER AND LIGHT COMPANY a/k/a ALLIANT ENERGY CORPORATION, Defendant-Appellees.
Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Robert B. Hanson, Judge.
Michael Sellers appeals from the district court's grant of a motion for summary judgment in favor of Interstate Power and Light Company, a/k/a Alliant Energy Corporation.
Trent W. Nelson and Michael M. Sellers of Sellers, Haraldson, and Binford, Des Moines, for appellant.
Mark A. Roberts and Dawn M. Gibson of Simmons Perrine Moyer Bergman, P.L.C., Cedar Rapids, for appellee.
Considered by Potterfield, P.J., and Mullins and Bower, JJ.
Michael Sellers appeals from the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Interstate Power and Light Company, a/k/a Alliant Energy Corporation (Alliant). He argues the grant of this motion was improper as Alliant lost its right to enforce its agreement with him, Alliant would be unjustly enriched if allowed to recover, and that genuine issues of material fact exist to preclude summary judgment. We affirm, finding the ten-year statute of limitations for written contracts does not bar Alliant's recovery and Sellers' remaining arguments are not preserved for our review.
I. Facts and proceedings.
Michael Sellers sought to develop a tract of land in Newton, Iowa. He signed an Electric Facilities Extension Agreement with Alliant Energy on November 23, 2000 to provide electricity to the development. Under this agreement, Sellers was to advance funds to Alliant of $31, 190.06, which represented the cost of construction for Alliant to provide electricity to the proposed development. Alliant was to hold these funds and use them to refund Sellers the amounts paid by residents of the development for electricity during a ten-year period. At the end of this period, Alliant would own whatever advanced funds were not refunded to Sellers.
After the agreement was signed, Sellers was unable to make the advance payment, and Alliant agreed to modify the contract to allow for Sellers to provide a bond in the same amount in lieu of the cash advance. Merchants Bonding Company issued a bond in Sellers' favor for this purpose. During the next ten years, development of the Newton land did not progress and no refunds were earned or paid. In October 2011, Alliant contacted Sellers to collect on the bond; Sellers notified Alliant of his intent not to pay. Sellers filed an action for declaratory and injunctive relief, seeking to prevent Alliant from collecting on the bond. Sellers argued that any action by Alliant fell outside the ten-year statute of limitations for written contracts, that he was fraudulently induced into entering into the contract, and that Alliant could not recover on the bond due to the doctrine of laches. Both parties moved for summary judgment. The district court granted the motion in favor of Alliant, finding the ten-year statute of limitations did not bar recovery, as the cause of action did not accrue until after the ten years had passed. Sellers appeals.
We review a grant of summary judgment for the correction of errors at law.
Our review of an appeal from a summary judgment ruling takes two steps. First, we examine the entire record to determine whether genuine issues of material fact exist; if no factual dispute exists, we determine whether the district court correctly applied the law. Summary judgment is properly granted if the only controversy concerns the legal consequences flowing from undisputed facts. ...