Sep 23 2011

Piedmont Files Suit To Recover $2 Million Bailout Loss

View Undergrounding Complaint and Answer Documents

The City of Piedmont has filed a lawsuit against 2 engineering firms to recover monies lost in the Piedmont Hills private undergrounding district bailout.  A copy of the  Complaint filed by the City of Piedmont and Answer filed by Robert Gray & Associates (RGA) is shown below.

The second defendant, Harris & Associates, Inc., has filed a motion to stay litigation and compel arbitration, which will be heard on October 4, 2011.  The trial date  in California Superior Court in Contra Costa has not yet been set. The complaint was filed on April 1, 2011.  Case status may be followed online here.

The Complaint alleges that “bedrock was not accounted for in the plans and specifications in a meaningful way. There was no pre-project subsurface or geotechnical investigation undertaken in connection with the project.  Additionally, existing and publicly available geotechnical reports were not requested or reviewed. . . . The review of resulting bids did not identify this issue. . . . The inclusion of a “rock excavation” line in the project plans and specifications, without quantification, exposed the City to an unreasonable risk of cost overruns . . . .” of $2 million.  It alleges that “Notwithstanding defendant RGA’s project inspection obligations, the lack of trench dams in Crest Road went undetected”, resulting in the wash out of the road and costs of over $280,000.   It alleges mis-measurement of trench lines as 13,700 rather than 15,700 feet, resulting in $200,000 in cost overruns.   It alleges misplacement of utility boxes in unsuitable locations, resulting in $32,000 of extra cost. 

The Answer contains numerous standard defenses, including that the City voluntarily accepted the risks it encountered.

 (Click on face page below to see entire court document)

                      COMPLAINT                                                                         ANSWER










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