Case 1:13-cv-00015-DLC Document 43 Filed 09/17/13 Page 1 of 4
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MONTANA
ROBERT R. OLIG,
XANTERRA PARKS & RESORTS,
INC., a Delaware corporation, ADDIE
WICKHAM, and John Does 1-5,
ORDER ADOPTING FINDINGS
AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF
U.S. MAGISTRATE j!:!jLED
Clel'!<. y.S. DiStrict Court
Plaintiff Robert Olig brings claims for wrongful discharge, intentional
infliction ofemotional distress, and punitive damages against his former employer,
Defendant Xanterra Parks & Resorts, Inc., the concessionaire in Yellowstone
National Park. On July 30, 2013, United States Magistrate Judge Keith Strong
entered findings and recommendations (doc. 40) on Olig's motion to remand (doc.
15) and Defendants' motion to dismiss (doc. 6), which was converted to a motion
for summary judgment after notice to the parties (doc. 37). Judge Strong
concluded that the federal enclave doctrine applied to Olig's claims. Accordingly,
not only was the case properly removed to this Court under federal question
jurisdiction, but Olig's causes of action must be dismissed because they do not
Case 1:13-cv-00015-DLC Document 43 Filed 09/17/13 Page 2 of 4
exist under the law that applies within the federal enclave of Yellowstone National
Park. Judge Strong therefore recommends that Olig's motion to remand be denied
and Defendants' motion to dismiss be granted.
Pending before the Court are Olig's objections to Judge Strong's findings
and recommendations. Doc. 41. Olig's objections require a de novo review of
any part of Judge Strong's findings and recommendations to which objection is
properly made. Rule 72(b)(3) Fed.R.Civ.P. After a thorough review ofthe file
and the applicable law, the Court concludes Olig's objections essentially rehash
the same arguments made to Judge Strong and do not overcome his well-reasoned
analysis. Accordingly, Olig's objections are overruled and Judge Strong's
findings and recommendations are adopted in full.
As an initial matter, Olig characterizes Judge Strong's decision as a ruling
that "as a matter of law, a lawsuit cannot be sustained under the federal enclave
doctrine when a private corporation terminates an employee who worked both on
and offthe enclave." Doc. 41, p. 3. But that is not the rule ofJudge Strong's
analysis. Judge Strong reasoned that Olig's lawsuit cannot be sustained because
Olig's particular claims arose within the federal enclave and the applicable law
within that enclave does not recognize Olig's causes of action.
Similarly, Olig asserts elsewhere that the issue is "whether a private
Case 1:13-cv-00015-DLC Document 43 Filed 09/17/13 Page 3 of 4
corporation is entitled to federal enclave jurisdiction when they purposefully sent
their employee offthe federal enclave to perform various work tasks." Doc. 41,
pp. 8-9. But the fact that Olig performed work for Xanterra outside the enclave is
irrelevant under the particular facts of this case. The issue is where his particular
claims arose. Durham v. Lockheed Martin Corp., 445 F.3d 1247, 1250 (9th Cir.
2006); Akin v. Ashland Chemical Co., 156 F.3d 1030, 1034 (10th Cir. 1998); In re
High-Tech Employee Antitrust Litigation, 856 F.Supp.2d 1103, 1125 (N.D.Cal.
2012); see also Stiefel v. Bechtel Corp., 497 F.Supp.2d 1138, 1148 (N.D. Cal.
2007) (applicability of federal enclave doctrine turns on whether all pertinent
events occurred on the enclave) and Snow v. Bechtel Const. Inc, 647 F.Supp. 1514,
1521 (C.D. Cal. 1986) (same). And Judge Strong correctly concluded that based
on Olig's allegations, the causes of action arose within the enclave. Doc. 40, pp.
9-11. Although Olig was directed to work outside the enclave, neither his
Complaint nor his affidavits allege that any ofthe allegedly wrongful conduct
giving rise to his causes of action occurred outside the enclave.
Finally, Olig argues Judge Strong failed to strictly construe the removal
statute and failed resolve any doubt about removal in favor ofremand. See Gaus
v. Miles, Inc., 980 F.2d 564,566 (9th Cir.1992) (per curiam). Olig argues that
since the case law relied upon by Judge Strong does not address the issue of
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whether a private corporation is entitled to federal enclave jurisdiction when they
purposefully send their employee offthe enclave to perform work, there is doubt
about the right of removal the case should be remanded without consideration of
Defendants' motion to dismiss. But again, this objection relies on Olig's
misunderstanding ofthe issue. Since Judge Strong correctly concluded that Olig's
claims arose within the enclave, there is no doubt about the right of removal.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that Findings and Recommendations ofU.S.
Magistrate Judge Strong are adopted in their entirety.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED:
(1) Olig's motion for remand (doc. 15) is DENIED;
(2) Defendants' motion to dismiss (doc. 6) is converted to a motion for
summary judgment and GRANTED; and
(3) Defendants' motion for judicial notice (Doc. 8) is DENIED AS
The Clerk of Court is directed to notify the parties ofthe entry of this Order
and close this case accordingly.
DATED this IT day ofSeptemb r 2013.
Dana L. Christensen, Chie Judge
United States District Court