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City will try to settle lawsuit

November 21, 2000

City will try to settle lawsuit



By DAN KULIN / Staff Writer


A lawsuit filed by Hagerstown Spring Works Co. against the City of Hagerstown will not go to trial next month as scheduled because the parties will try to settle the matter, according to documents filed in Washington County Circuit Court.

The case had been scheduled for a Dec. 18 jury trial.

The trial was postponed under a joint request, "so that the parties may resolve the issues by settlement or alternative dispute techniques," court documents state.

The Spring Works at 437 E. Baltimore St. is suing the city for $500,000 plus interest and other costs for damages caused by floods that occurred on or about June 19, 1996.

In the lawsuit, Spring Works' representatives allege the flooding was a result of the city's negligence in constructing and maintaining stormwater management facilities.

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The Spring Works is near two city stormwater streams called Town and Marsh runs. Flooding from the runs also has been blamed for damage at Municipal Stadium, which is adjacent to the Spring Works.

Supporters of a $15 million proposal to build a new stadium at Municipal Stadium have included in their plans money to correct the flooding problem by redirecting one of the runs.

The Spring Works property has been identified as space for parking and a link to Hager Park under a long-term plan presented by stadium supporters.

Washington County Commissioner Bert L. Iseminger has said his support of county funding for the stadium proposal is contingent on acquiring the Spring Works property. Iseminger's support is considered critical for the stadium project.

Spring Works President Philip Physioc Sr. said Monday he had not spoken with city representatives about the lawsuit or selling his property.

He referred all other questions about the lawsuit to his attorney Gorman E. Getty III.

Getty refused to comment.

Kevin Karpinski, a lawyer for the city for this lawsuit, did not return phone messages left at his office Monday.

Last month, Daniel Karp, another lawyer representing the city in the Spring Works case, said the rains and any subsequent flooding were an act of God, for which the city cannot be held responsible.

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