Judge Revokes 3rd Street Stipulation
A judge revoked the 2011 three-way stipulation agreement this week, bringing the 3rd Street Project back to almost the beginning.
Common Pleas Court Judge James Proud ruled on Monday to revoke a May 2011 stipulation agreement between Media Borough, Delaware County and Broomall's Lake Country Club.
Although the stipulation agreement did not answer the question of "who owns the dam," it did move the project forward in May 2011 after 16 years of litigation. Media Borough was responsible for the repairs to the road while the county and BLCC were to maintain the dam once the repairs were made.
Proud's ruling cancels out any progress that was made in the last year.
In September, Broomall's Lake Country Club filed a contempt of court petition stating that Media Borough Council's approval of a one-lane, one-way roadway across the 3rd Street Dam, violated the May 2011 three-way stipulation agreement, which stated the roadway must be "re-established." Prior to being closed it was a two-lane, two-way roadway.
The parties submitted written briefs or arguments to Proud on Feb. 15 and rather than rule on the contempt of court petition, Proud revoked the original stipulation agreement making the contempt of court petition null and void.
Eugene Bonner, attorney representing BLCC, said the three parties came to the stipulation agreement and the judge signed off on it in May 2011, but ownership of the dam was never determined.
According to the Delaware County Daily Times, Proud wrote in his ruling, "It is now clear that at least two of the parties are in serious disagreement as to whether or not the parties ever actually came to an agreement.”
The parties now disagree on the language used in the stipulation agreement —specifically the meaning of "re-establishing" the bridge— and disagree on how to move forward with repairs, which was the basis of Proud's ruling to revoke the original agreement, according to the Delco Times.
"He's saying now that it's not settled," Bonner said meaning the stipulation agreement and ownership of the dam. "It goes back to the beginning."
There are several options of how the litigation will move forward including asking the judge to reconsider his ruling, appealing or going to trial.
"It's pretty complicated," Bonner said. "Right now, we wait and see what happens."
Neither Broomall’s Lake Country Club Board of Directors President Paul Cavanagh nor Media Borough Council President Brian Hall are happy with Proud's ruling.