from a final judgment in a declaratory relief action. Second
Judicial District Court, Washoe County; Connie J.
Law, PC, and Mark G. Simons, Reno, for Appellant.
Nicholas Pereos, Ltd., and C. Nicholas Pereos, Reno, for
Peterson Baker, PLLC, and Tamara Beatty Peterson and Nikki L.
Baker, Las Vegas, for Amicus Curiae.
THE COURT EN BANC.
2005, the Nevada Legislature enacted the garbage lien statute
to give waste collection companies a method for collecting
delinquent payments for their services. See NRS
444.520. For the first time, we are asked to interpret this
statute and the procedures required to perfect and foreclose
on a garbage lien. This dispute focuses on whether NRS
444.520(3)'s reference to the mechanics' lien statute
incorporates only the mechanics' lien statute's
procedural requirements for foreclosure, as set forth in NRS
108.239. Or, rather, if that reference to the mechanics'
lien statute also incorporates the requirements for
perfecting a lien, as set forth in NRS 108.226. Additionally,
we are asked to determine if the perpetual nature of the
garbage lien means that the foreclosure of a garbage lien is
not subject to a statute of limitations. We hold that the
reference to the mechanics' lien statute in NRS
444.520(3) incorporates only the mechanics' lien
statute's procedural requirements for foreclosure. We
also hold that no limitations period applies to the
foreclosure of a garbage lien.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
West Taylor Street, LLC, is the owner of a duplex in Reno.
This duplex has two addresses, and each address has a waste
service account with appellant Waste Management of Nevada,
Inc. At some point, both of these waste services accounts
became delinquent. As a result, Waste Management filed three
notices of liens against the property. West Taylor filed a
complaint with the district court asking, among other things,
for declaratory relief. West Taylor alleged that Waste
Management did not properly follow the lien perfection
requirements under NRS 108.226, which West Taylor argued the
Legislature incorporated by reference into the garbage lien
statute. West Taylor filed a motion for partial summary
judgment as to this issue. The district court granted West
Taylor's motion for summary judgment, holding that the
hen perfection requirements outlined in NRS 108.226 applied
to the garbage lien statute. Therefore, the district court
held that Waste Management did not properly record the lien
because it failed to record it within 90 days of the
completion of the work. The district court also held, in the
alternative, that Waste Management could no longer foreclose
on its liens because a two-year limitations period applied to
the foreclosing on garbage liens. As a result of this ruling,
Waste Management voluntarily released all three of its liens
against the property. The parties proceeded to litigate other
claims, until West Taylor voluntarily dismissed those claims.
Waste Management now challenges the grant of summary judgment
in West Taylor's favor as to the recordation of the
case is not moot
initial matter, we address West Taylor's argument that
this matter is moot because Waste Management released the
three liens. As a general rule, this court will decline to
hear any case in which there is no actual controversy.
Univ. & Cmty. Coll. Sys. of Nev. v. Nevadans for
Sound Gov't, 120 Nev. 712, 720, 100 P.3d 179, 186
(2004) ("[T]he duty of every judicial tribunal is to
decide actual controversies by a judgment which can be
carried into effect, and not to give opinions upon moot
questions or abstract propositions, or to declare principles
of law which cannot affect the matter in issue before
it." (internal quotation marks omitted)). Therefore, if
a case comes before this court when there is no actual
controversy, even if the case had a live controversy at the
outset, then we will dismiss the case as moot. Personhood
Nev. v. Bristol, 126 Nev. 599, 602, 245 P.3d 572, 574
(2010) (holding that a case has to have an actual controversy
during "all stages of the proceeding" or it would
be dismissed as moot). Because the district court's order
granting summary judgment prevents Waste Management from
refiling its garbage liens against West Taylor, we conclude
that there is still a live controversy, and the case is not
plain language of NRS 444.520(3) incorporates only the
foreclosure procedures from the mechanics' lien
review questions of statutory construction de novo. Tarn
v. Eighth Judicial Dist Court,131 Nev. 792, 799, 358
P.3d 234, 240 (2015). "If the plain meaning of a statute
is clear on its face, then [this court] will not go beyond
the language of the statute to determine its meaning."
Beazer Homes Nev., Inc. v. Eighth Judicial Dist.
Court,120 Nev. 575, 579-80, 97 P.3d 1132, 1135 (2004)
(internal quotation marks omitted) (alterations in original).
When a statute is clear on its face, this court gives the
statute's plain language its "ordinary
meaning." UMC Physicians' Bargaining Unit of
Nev. Serv. Emps. Union v. Nev. Serv. Emps. Union ISEIU Local
1107,124 Nev. 84, 88, 178 P.3d 709, 712 (2008). If a
statute is ambiguous, meaning that it is ...