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2012-UP-032 - Ortiz v. SCDC

THIS OPINION HAS NO PRECEDENTIAL VALUE.  IT SHOULD NOT BE CITED OR RELIED ON AS PRECEDENT IN ANY PROCEEDING EXCEPT AS PROVIDED BY RULE 268(d)(2), SCACR.

THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
In The Court of Appeals

Ernesto Ortiz, Appellant,

v.

South Carolina Department of Corrections, Respondent.


Appeal from the Administrative Law Court
Deborah Brooks Durden, Administrative Law Court Judge


Unpublished Opinion No. 2012-UP-032
Submitted January 3, 2012 – Filed January 25, 2012   


AFFIRMED


Ernesto Ortiz, pro se.

Christopher D. Florian, of Columbia, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM:  Ernesto Ortiz appeals an order of the Administrative Law Court (ALC) summarily dismissing his appeal of the South Carolina Department of Corrections' (the Department) denial of his inmate grievance.  On appeal, Ortiz argues the ALC was required to rule on the merits of his appeal because a state-created property interest was at stake.  We affirm[1] pursuant to Rule 220(b)(1), SCACR, and the following authorities:  Rule 220(c), SCACR ("The appellate court may affirm any ruling, order, decision or judgment upon any ground(s) appearing in the Record on Appeal."); Slezak v. S.C. Dep't of Corr., 361 S.C. 327, 331, 605 S.E.2d 506, 508 (2004) (explaining summary dismissal is appropriate where the appeal does not implicate an inmate's state-created liberty or property interest).[2]

AFFIRMED.

FEW, C.J., THOMAS and KONDUROS, JJ., concur.


[1] We decide this case without oral argument pursuant to Rule 215, SCACR.

[2] We note the ALC properly dismissed Ortiz's appeal but erred by finding it did not have subject-matter jurisdiction.  The ALC has jurisdiction over all inmate grievance appeals that have been properly filed but may summarily dismiss on the merits where the grievance does not implicate a state-created liberty or property interest.  See Skipper v. S.C. Dep't of Corr., 370 S.C. 267, 279 n.5 633 S.E.2d 910, 917 n.5 (Ct. App. 2006) ("In light of our decision that [the inmate's] grievance did not implicate a state-created liberty interest, we find the [ALC] had jurisdiction to dismiss the appeal on the merits.").  Nonetheless, because the grievance did not implicate a state-created property interest, the ALC's error does not affect the disposition of this appeal.