Earlier this month, BMO litigation attorney Alan Zimmet settled two cases in Pinellas County, Florida that illustrate how the firm’s work on behalf of municipalities often involves reaching a resolution that works for all involved.
City of Treasure Island v. Graham Booth, et al. concerned the defective design and construction of the City’s celebrated beach trail, which was funded through a tax increase specifically designed to pay for the project.
Shortly after the beach trail opened to the public, it began to show substantial cracking. Zimmet settled the case following three years of litigation, and the $850,000 settlement will cover the cost of replacing the trail while reimbursing the City for the majority of its attorney’s fees.
City of Largo v. Custer involved a long-term dispute with a property owner who developed a subdivision adjacent to another property he owned, and installed a drainage pipe to route stormwater from the subdivision to a pond on his property.
The pipe disintegrated over the years to the point where stormwater could not drain through it. As a result, some areas of the subdivision would flood during heavy rains.
The property owner refused to maintain the pipe or let the City maintain it. After Zimmet filed suit on behalf of the City of Largo and the case proceeded towards trial, the property owner agreed to grant the City an easement to install a new pipe that should solve the drainage problem for the subdivision’s residents. In return, the City agreed to pay the property owner $14,000 for the easement over their property.