Peter F. Melendez, Plaintiff-appellant, v. Arizona Department of Economic Security; Arizona Statepersonnel Board, Defendants-appellees, 12 F.3d 1107 (9th Cir. 1993)Annotate this Case
Submitted Nov. 17, 1993. *Decided Dec. 1, 1993
Before: SCHROEDER, D.W. NELSON, and THOMPSON, Circuit Judges.
Peter F. Melendez appeals pro se the district court's dismissal without prejudice of his action for lack of jurisdiction pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b) (1). We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. We review de novo a district court's dismissal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Reebok Int'l, Ltd. v. Marnatech Enterprises, Inc., 970 F.2d 552, 554 (9th Cir. 1992). We affirm.
Melendez contends that the district court erred by dismissing his action because the district court "has jurisdiction over all state courts" under 28 U.S.C. § 1331. This contention lacks merit.
"District courts ... have original jurisdiction of all civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States." 28 U.S.C. § 1331. District courts do not, however, have jurisdiction "over direct challenges to final decisions of state courts, even if those challenges allege that the state court's action was unconstitutional." Allah v. Superior Court, 871 F.2d 887, 890 (9th Cir. 1989).
Here, Melendez alleged that the Arizona Department of Economic Security wrongfully terminated his employment and that, because of illness, he was unable to appeal timely the Arizona State Personnel Board's (ASPB) affirmance of his discharge. In his action, Melendez attempted to appeal the Arizona Supreme Court's denial of his petition for review of the ASPB's decision and requested a new trial on the merits of his discharge. The district court did not have jurisdiction over Melendez's appeal of the Arizona Supreme Court's decision. See id. Moreover, because Melendez failed to allege any facts invoking a federal question, the district court properly dismissed his action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1331.
Although we denied appellee's motion for summary affirmance because of the possibility of curing amendments, see Noll v. Carlson, 809 F.2d 1446 (9th Cir. 1987), we have now conducted a plenary review of the record and determine that there are no circumstances which could be alleged to cure the jurisdictional defects.