The City of Wewahitchka has received a new summons in a lawsuit filed against them by the former contractor for the city’s new firehouse, Winterfell Construction Inc.
The second summons, which officially notifies the city that they are being sued, comes after the city was granted a motion to dismiss Winterfell’s previous summons in the case due to improper service.
The initial summons was mistakenly served to Port St. Joe City Manager Jim Anderson, who was not involved in the matter, in April. Correctly serving Wewahitchka was a requirement Winterfell had to meet in order to proceed with the lawsuit, according to order granting the city’s motion to dismiss.
"The City of Wewahitchka's Motion to Quash Service of Process is granted as to the City of Wewahitchka," the order read. "(The) plaintiff's complaint shall be properly served upon the City of Wewahitchka pursuant to section 48.111 of the Florida Statute."
"It is further ordered that the plaintiff, if it files an amended complaint naming the City of Wewahitchka as a party, must serve the same in accordance with the provisions of section 48.111 of the Florida Statute."
Winterfell’s lawsuit came months after the city terminated their contract with the construction company in January over concerns regarding the quality and pace of the firehouse’s construction.
The city particularly cited concerns with the quality of the building’s siding and roof installation and the building’s concrete slab.
In the complaint, Winterfell claims Wewahitchka breached the contract, citing arguments that city processes significantly slowed or hindered the progress of the firehouse project and that Winterfell feels the contract was wrongfully terminated. The company is suing for damages, costs and other relief.
“The city and its representatives continually interrupted the subject project by instructing Winterfell to perform outside of the terms and conditions in the contract,” reads the complaint.
The construction company went on to allege that the city failed to sign necessary change orders in a timely manner, if at all, and that the city’s concerns over defective workmanship “would not prohibit the completion of the project.”
Wewahitchka has until 20 days after they receive the summons, which is dated July 19, to respond.
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