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Danny Williams responds to City of St. John's affidavit

Danny Williams, who heads the company leading the Galway development, is going to court over treatment by the City of St. John’s.
Danny Williams, who heads the company leading the Galway development. - FILE

Former premier fires back in his own affidavit, alleging discrimination against Galway development

Developer and former premier Danny Williams is firing back amid his lawsuit against the City of St. John’s, alleging the city has acted in a “discriminatory manner” against his Galway development.

Williams, through his numbered company 10718 NFLD Inc., filed a lawsuit against the City of St. John’s on Nov. 9.

In an affidavit filed in Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court on Thursday, Williams alleges that development agreements, which the city says are required for developments, were not in place for other retail store developments at Stavanger Drive, Hebron Way and Kelsey Drive.

In the city’s affidavit, filed last week, deputy city manager Jason Sinyard referenced development agreements needed for the Costco retail site.

Williams alleges his access to information requests show “development agreements have not been required in most circumstances and lends credence to the arbitrary, ad hoc and discriminatory manner in which 10718 has been treated while the city breaches its own regulations at will.”

The city’s affidavit alleges that Williams’ company submitted a redrafted version of a development agreement, which the city says had “limited technical complexity,” and so was rejected by council.

The city accused Williams’ company of “attempting to write its own development agreement.”

Williams’ affidavit fires back at that charge, alleging that the development agreements, presented by the city in August, were “misleading and inaccurate in that they were drafted by the city in a retrospective manner.”

It’s alleged that the development agreements referred to work that had already been completed as incomplete, despite approval by city staff, according to Williams’ affidavit.

Williams agrees that the court will need to weigh in on the use of arbitration panels by the city, which the city says it uses to ensure “that there is a timely resolution of any dispute,” regarding development agreements.

10718 NFLD Inc., represented by former Williams-era justice minister Jerome Kennedy, will return to court for a hearing in the lawsuit on Dec. 19.

 

david.maher@thetelegram.com

Twitter: DavidMaherNL

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