CHARLOTTE — A terminated contract with English Construction has landed the city of Charlotte in court. The Charlotte City Council discussed the lawsuit in closed session Monday.
English Construction entered the spotlight in 2019 when a worker fell in a hole. The company was originally hired in 2018 on a $5.6 million contract to improve sewer lines in the Ballantyne area.
The hole is just one of the safety issues the city raised when it terminated its contact with English Construction. Now, that company is suing the city.
The contactor said the city terminated them for convenience and not cause, and did not give them enough time to address the safety concerns.
In the lawsuit, English Construction said the contract required 10 days’ notice to address any issues that would result in cancellation. The city of Charlotte denied that period was needed.
The company also accused the city of not paying the company for work it performed on the project prior to the company’s termination.
“From English’s standpoint, it was pretty straightforward. We allege that we did work and that we weren’t paid for it,” said Bill Pollock, English Construction’s attorney.
In 2019, a contractor fell down a 40-foot hole at the project. The city cited Channel 9′s reporting in the lawsuit.
The city also included a photo of a trench along Lancaster Highway that they said was not properly secured. There was also a photo of people doing work outside the trench box.
“English Construction had been given numerous safety-related warnings and notices by the City throughout its work on the Project. English Construction had failed to correct its unsafe operations, and the City had no obligation to allow English Construction to remain on the Project to the risk and detriment of the citizens of the City of Charlotte,” the city said in court documents.
The lawsuit comes down to how the contract was canceled.
The attorney for English Construction said the company did everything by the book and that the city is in the wrong for the way it has been handled. The attorney said he expects the conflict to be resolved soon.
“They’re a very high quality contractor. They do a lot of excellent work. They’ve won a number of awards for their work, so they’re very proud of what they do, and they stand by their work,” Pollock said.
Channel 9 has reached out to Charlotte officials regarding to the lawsuit, but the city does not comment on pending litigation.
(WATCH BELOW: Firefighters rescue worker trapped at bottom of 40-foot hole in Ballantyne)
©2022 Cox Media Group