On April 25, 2013, Hinds County Circuit Judge Winston Kidd rendered a bench verdict of $194,154.95 in W&G Properties, LLC v. Hinds County Economic Development District.

Here is the Court’s opinion and order. The trial was in June 2011.

The case facts would be great for a contracts class in law school. HCEDD sold land to plaintiffs in  the J.C. Sonny McDonald Industrial Center. Plaintiff needed 3-phase power and a sanitary sewer line. HCEDD’s representative stated that the industrial park had it–even pointing to sewer manhole covers along the frontage road portion of the property. As a result, plaintiffs bought the property for $16,000 per acre and started construction.

Unfortunately, when W&G’s contractor prepared to attach to  the electrical power, he learned that there was no power on the property. It took two months to get temporary power because it had to be run across I-55.

Later, the plumbing contractor prepared to connect the plumbing to the sewer lines running along the frontage road. You guessed it. No sewer lines. Two months later, HCEDD installed a septic tank that was not designed to handle the levels of discharge produced by plaintiff’s business.

Feelings were hurt. Frustration prevailed. Litigation followed.

The court found that HCEDD breached the contract by not having sewer lines and power available at the property.

The court awarded the following damages:

  • $56,000- difference between value of property represented vs. actually received
  • $137,034- lost profits
  • $1,120- out of pocket damages

Total damages were $194,145.95.

Jud Lee of Madison and Toby Coleman represented the plaintiff. Lawson Hester of Wyatt Tarrant and Combs in Jackson represented the defendant.

  • Not quite two years to issue a bench opinion! A speed demon compared to Wingate!