ILNews

State fair settlement fails

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Mid-America Sound Corp., one of two companies that offered an additional $7.2 million to victims of the Indiana State Fair stage collapse, announced it will not proceed with its offer after deciding not enough claimants accepted the settlement arrangement.

Mid-America and James Thomas Engineering offered the additional funds in exchange for a sufficient number of victims releasing both companies from lawsuits. Mid-America decided that although 51 of the 62 eligible claimants accepted the offer, that number wasn’t enough to proceed with the settlement.

The company announced it was withdrawing its offer Wednesday evening. Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said the state will proceed with distributing the $6 million in supplemental state-provided funds to the victims and will seek to facilitate discussions between the claimants and James Thomas Engineering.

“Because State Fair victims said they needed financial assistance sooner rather than later, my office made an effort to facilitate a private settlement to increase the relief available. It was worthwhile to try to bring the claimants and defendant companies together; but since the parties did not reach an agreement, we will move to distribute the original $6 million the Legislature appropriated, well before the January 2013 deadline, and we will continue to look for opportunities to serve the victims,” Zoeller said in a statement released Wednesday night.

Because the agreement fell through, claimants can still pursue lawsuits against Mid-America or other defendants not a party to settlement agreements.

Zoeller had attempted to resolve indemnification claims made by Mid-America against the state. The company claims in legal pleadings that the state must cover its legal costs in lawsuits related to the stage-rigging collapse, which the state denies. A bill passed by the General Assembly this year gave the AG’s office the ability to resolve those claims. It also contained language stating that claimants who receive supplemental funds may not sue the state under an indemnification claim.

James Thomas Engineering is not suing the state.

“On a personal note I will admit to some disappointment, but I believe the public-private effort was nonetheless worthwhile. Without putting the State at any risk, we provided an opportunity to speed more than twice the funds to the victims, which has always been my focus. It's not my role to assign blame that an agreement was not reached, but I will continue to offer whatever assistance my office can provide,” Zoeller added.

The attorney general’s office will circulate additional information to eligible claimants and their attorneys this week information about distribution of the $6 million.

 

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  1. It appears the police and prosecutors are allowed to change the rules halfway through the game to suit themselves. I am surprised that the congress has not yet eliminated the right to a trial in cases involving any type of forensic evidence. That would suit their foolish law and order police state views. I say we eliminate the statute of limitations for crimes committed by members of congress and other government employees. Of course they would never do that. They are all corrupt cowards!!!

  2. Poor Judge Brown probably thought that by slavishly serving the godz of the age her violations of 18th century concepts like due process and the rule of law would be overlooked. Mayhaps she was merely a Judge ahead of her time?

  3. in a lawyer discipline case Judge Brown, now removed, was presiding over a hearing about a lawyer accused of the supposedly heinous ethical violation of saying the words "Illegal immigrant." (IN re Barker) http://www.in.gov/judiciary/files/order-discipline-2013-55S00-1008-DI-429.pdf .... I wonder if when we compare the egregious violations of due process by Judge Brown, to her chiding of another lawyer for politically incorrectness, if there are any conclusions to be drawn about what kind of person, what kind of judge, what kind of apparatchik, is busy implementing the agenda of political correctness and making off-limits legit advocacy about an adverse party in a suit whose illegal alien status is relevant? I am just asking the question, the reader can make own conclsuion. Oh wait-- did I use the wrong adjective-- let me rephrase that, um undocumented alien?

  4. of course the bigger questions of whether or not the people want to pay for ANY bussing is off limits, due to the Supreme Court protecting the people from DEMOCRACY. Several decades hence from desegregation and bussing plans and we STILL need to be taking all this taxpayer money to combat mostly-imagined "discrimination" in the most obviously failed social program of the postwar period.

  5. You can put your photos anywhere you like... When someone steals it they know it doesn't belong to them. And, a man getting a divorce is automatically not a nice guy...? That's ridiculous. Since when is need of money a conflict of interest? That would mean that no one should have a job unless they are already financially solvent without a job... A photographer is also under no obligation to use a watermark (again, people know when a photo doesn't belong to them) or provide contact information. Hey, he didn't make it easy for me to pay him so I'll just take it! Well heck, might as well walk out of the grocery store with a cart full of food because the lines are too long and you don't find that convenient. "Only in Indiana." Oh, now you're passing judgement on an entire state... What state do you live in? I need to characterize everyone in your state as ignorant and opinionated. And the final bit of ignorance; assuming a photo anyone would want is lucky and then how much does your camera have to cost to make it a good photo, in your obviously relevant opinion?

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