City council to hold emergency meeting on LRT settlement
Published Thursday, September 10, 2009 5:10PM EDT
Ottawa city council is expected to vote on a multi-million dollar settlement with Siemens over a cancelled light rail plan at an emergency meeting scheduled for Friday morning.
Although Ottawa city council appears to be ready to pay $36.7 million to settle a lawsuit over a cancelled north-south light rail project; the Siemens consortium came back with a counter offer on Thursday.
There's speculation the disagreement could be over how the settlement is paid out.
Ottawa Mayor Larry O'Brien is defending the settlement, saying the cost of cancelling the light rail line is worth it.
"Whatever it may be in the end will be small in comparison as to what it would have cost each and every one of you as individuals had we moved forward," O'Brien said on Thursday.
Council discussed details of the settlement at a five-hour closed door meeting on Wednesday.
Although city councillors have been told not to comment on the cost of the deal, the $36.7-million figure was accidently revealed on a projector when reporters were allowed back into the meeting.
Siemens and subcontractor St. Lawrence Cement launched a $217-million lawsuit against the city after the billion-dollar-project was cancelled in late 2007.
The city had already spent $55 million on the project before backing out of the deal. It has since spent $2.5 million on legal fees.