Coliseum Fight May Not Be Over

Friends of the Coliseum, a group that helped to delay the demolition of the old Memorial Coliseum, was asked to pay $30,000 for causing that delay.

A judge ruled in favor of the City of Corpus Christi Wednesday, ordering the group to pay that $30,000 because they had posted a $30,000 bond to cover the costs of delaying the project back in 2010. The group was able to get an injunction, but that decision was overturned and the demolition of the Coliseum continued.

Then, the City filed suit to get the $30,000 from the group, but the organization balked at paying up.

Eventually, the two sides went back to court and the City asked the courts to make the group pay them around $65,000 to cover the costs of the delay; but visiting Judge Martha Huerta ruled that the Friends of the Coliseum only had to pay the $30,000.

Now there is talk of an appeal, and if there is, the City plans on bringing down the hammer. City Attorney Carlos Valdez said that, if the group decides to appeal Wednesday's ruling, he will ask a judge to more than double the judgement against the group.

"One of the possibilities, of course, is appealing it," said George Clower of Friends of the Coliseum. "So until we decide to do that, I don't know, but that's certainly a possibility."

"If they consider appealing it, it might even be to the City's advantage if they appeal it, because that will reopen the door for us to ask a court of appeals to impose the original request of $65,000," Valdez said. "If people are thinking about filing a frivolous lawsuit like this, they should think twice, because this is just an example  of why this city hasn't progressed. Why we were stuck in a rut. It's very easy to stop progress with things like this. Before, we never addressed it. From now on, it will be addressed."

So the City is saying that this is a warning to everyone that it will go after those who file frivolous lawsuits. What exactly do they consider a frivolous lawsuit? That is open to interpretation, and so far, the legal system has sided with the City.


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