BAINBRIDGE -- The town council made a strong statement at its meeting on Wednesday, announcing it had filed a lawsuit against the Land that had allegedly done them wrong.
Steve Land, owner of the Land and Son Paving and Sealcoating, was named as the defendant in the case, filed by Bainbridge attorney Jim Ensley.
Land paved the walking path at East Point Park over a year ago, but the town was unsatisfied with his work.
The specifications for the project called for 2.5 inches of asphalt, but much of the path has far less -- as little as a half-inch in some places.
Ensley said he first addressed the issue with Land in a letter dated June 11, 2011.
Bainbridge gave Land until June 1 of this year to finish with the repairs and when the deadline passed, the council made a move.
"We're giving him the opportunity to fix it," Ensley said, "but now we're just forcing his hand."
The council discussed what the next move should be.
After initially agreeing that they would still allow Land to finish the repaving himself if he chose to, they soon decided to take a stronger stand.
"I'm not one for drawing a line in the sand and saying, 'Ok, here's the date,' and then drawing a new line and saying, 'Ok, here's the new date,'" Council President Chuck McElwee said. "If it's not done by this meeting next month, we'll shut it off and not allow him to do any work."
That meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, July 11 at 7 p.m.
At that time the council will bring in three other reputable contractors to bid on the project.
This will allow for two things.
First, it will finally complete the path, and second, it will allow the town to set a price for damages in the lawsuit.
The civil lawsuit will cover attorney fees, filing fees and the cost of another company to bring the path up to original specifications.
Ensley said he believes, at this point, it is much more likely that Land will come and do the repairs than for him to pay a settlement.
Bainbridge Clerk-Treasurer Jason Hartman said that when the project originally started the town already had a relationship with Land.
The company did a seal coating project for Bainbridge and it was comfortable enough with his work to hire him again.
They are now just hoping he will finish what he started.