Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — A state supreme court judge has thrown out a lawsuit filed against the city in which a Sanborn-based company sought to be named the lowest bidder for the municipal parking ramp demolition contract.
While the city appears to be victorious in the lawsuit filed by Scott Lawn Yard Inc. of Sanborn, the judge had harsh words for the city and its actions.
State Supreme Court Justice Richard S. Kloch Sr. threw out the case based on a technicality: Scott Lawn failed to name Empire Dismantlement Corp. — the lowest responsible bidder — among the defendants. That was a fatal flaw, Kloch wrote in a three-page ruling issued Tuesday.
Despite Kloch’s decision, city officials are playing a waiting game before moving ahead with the $1.17 million project.
City Attorney John Ottaviano said he was “cautiously optimistic” following Kloch’s decision.
“They have 30 days to file an appeal if they don’t agree with the decision,” Ottaviano said. “And they also might try and re-commence the action this time naming Empire Dismantling as a respondent.”
In his decision, Kloch noted that the city, common council and Mayor Michael Tucker were all named defendants. The decision by Scott Lawn and their attorney John Bartolomei not to include Empire would be a “derogation” to that company if he ruled in favor of Scott Lawn, Kloch said.
The judge cited a similar case in which a sporting goods store’s lawsuit against the City of Buffalo was thrown out by an appellate court because the alleged successful bidder wasn’t included in the lawsuit.
“I conclude that Empire Dismantlement Corp. is a necessary party, inasmuch as there is no question that the relief sought ... would inequitably affect its rights,” Kloch wrote.
Scott Lawn officials allege that a company representative arrived at City Hall around 1 p.m. April 5 to file their bid, but was misinformed by an employee in the city engineering department where to take it. The Scott Lawn employee ended up at the project engineer’s Buffalo office and was directed to go back to Lockport.