FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Brandon Moorebmoore@tampabaywater.org727-791-2304 | 727-470-0702
CLEARWATER, Fla. (October 21, 2013) — By a vote of 8-0, Tampa Bay Water’s board of directors voted today to pay HDR Engineering’s legal fees and costs, totaling about $21 million, and to end the litigation against HDR Engineering over the failed soil-cement liner in the C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir. The fees include costs for the trial, post-trial proceedings, and the appeal and will be paid through funds on hand and they will not directly affect water rates.
“While the outcome has fallen well short of our expectations and was not favorable for the agency, we firmly believe that trying to recoup the public’s investment through legal action was the right decision,” said Pinellas County Commissioner Susan Latvala, Tampa Bay Water’s Chairman of the Board. “We fought hard for what is right, and now we have to do what is in the best interest of the agency and the community to bring this chapter to a close.”
The Board’s decision comes after the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the trial court on Monday, September 23, 2013, and the board met to review the agency’s remaining legal options.
Tampa Bay Water continues to focus on providing the public with a fixed and fully functioning reservoir. Its number one priority is, and always has been, the commitment to provide clean, safe drinking water to the Tampa Bay region.
A fix for the region’s reservoir is well underway and the facility expected to be fully operational by the end of 2014. This long-term fix ensures that the region’s reservoir, a key component of our surface water system, is reliable and serving the region for the long-term.
For more information and updates on the Reservoir Renovation Project, please visit tampabaywater.org/reservoir and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Tampa Bay Water provides wholesale water to the public utility systems of Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties, as well as the cities of New Port Richey, St. Petersburg and Tampa. www.tampabaywater.org.
For news media requests, please contact: Michelle Stom, MPA, APR Chief of Staff/Chief Strategy Officer O: (727) 791-2305 | M: (727) 418-4652 Brandon Moore, APR Public Communications Manager O: (727) 791-2304 | M: (727) 470-0702