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King County awarded $14.7 million in legal fees in Brightwater suit

Summary

In an order issued this afternoon on King County’s post-trial motion in the lawsuit against joint venture contractor Vinci/Parsons/Frontier-Kemper, the court awarded King County $14.7 million for its attorneys fees and costs.

Story

In an order issued this afternoon on King County’s post-trial motion in the lawsuit against joint venture contractor Vinci/Parsons/Frontier-Kemper, the court awarded King County $14.7 million for its attorneys fees and costs.

The award represents the full amount of legal fees requested in the lawsuit filed in King County Superior Court against the contractor hired to build Brightwater’s two central conveyance tunnels following a competitive bidding process in 2006.

In December 2012, a jury awarded King County $155.8 million in damages after finding a Brightwater tunneling contractor defaulted on key contractual obligations. The jury verdict also awarded the contractor $26.2 million.

Today, in addition to awarding King County its legal fees, the court issued rulings denying post-trial motions by the sureties, as well as motions for a new trial by the contractor. These rulings leave in place the previous net jury verdict of $129.6 million to King County.

“The fee award further validates the effort to recover ratepayer money spent because of the contractor’s default on its obligations,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine, who made the decision to keep the project on track by hiring a new contractor to complete part of the central tunnel soon after taking office.

The legal team included in-house counsel Mary DeVuono Englund from King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg’s office and litigators David Goodnight and Karl Oles from the Stoel Rives law firm.

 

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