City of Oxnard awarded $4.1 million judgment that will go toward street improvements

The Superior Court of California for the County of Ventura awarded a $4.1 million judgment on Sept. 26, 2016, to the City of Oxnard following a dispute between the City and Southern California Gas Company over the costs of relocating gas lines for the Rice Avenue/Santa Clara Avenue Interchange Improvement project that was completed in 2012.

The Superior Court judgment comes after the California Court of Appeals for the 2nd District in January 2016 reversed the Superior Court’s original 2014 ruling to dismiss the City’s lawsuit to recover the costs it paid to Southern California Gas Company to relocate the gas lines so that the capital improvement project could proceed.

“This is a big win for the Oxnard community,” said Oxnard Public Works Director Dan Rydberg. “We’re pleased to be able to use these funds for critical street repairs that will greatly enhance the quality of life for our residents,” he said.

Oxnard City Attorney Stephen Fischer thanked the City’s project manager Cynthia Daniels for her diligence in documenting project costs, which facilitated the full recovery of the relocation expenses and the City Council’s decision to pursue the appeal.

“I would also like to thank the City’s litigation counsel, Holly Whatley of Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley for her excellent work in obtaining a judgment completely in the City’s favor,” Fischer added.

The relocation expenses the City paid to Southern California Gas Company originated from state transportation and federal grants, the street/state gas tax and air pollution, Transportation Development Act (TDA) and capital improvement funds. The $4.1 million will be reallocated to those funds, which are reserved for street improvement projects only. No money from the general fund was used for the project.

The $4.1 million judgment includes $2,587,278 in gas line relocation costs, $1.3 million in pre-judgment interest and $182,803 in attorney’s fees and costs.

 

The City of Oxnard is a full-service general law city incorporated in 1903. Oxnard is the largest and most populous city in the County of Ventura, serving 200,000 culturally diverse residents. Read more about the City of Oxnard at www.oxnard.org. Follow us on social media at www.twitter.com/CityofOxnard (@CityofOxnard), www.facebook.com/CityofOxnard and www.vimeo.com/cityofoxnard.


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