Judge dismisses sludge lawsuit against Terre Haute

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A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that alleged the city of Terre Haute and its officials defaulted on an agreement to take out water from waste and use the sludge to make fuel.

Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson of the U.S. Court for the Southern District of Indiana on Tuesday dismissed the lawsuit filed by Highland TH LLC and Overseas Lease Group that sought $172 million. The suit was filed against the city, Mayor Duke Bennett and other city officials, and the company that built Terre Haute’s new wastewater treatment plant.

Magnus-Stinson wrote, “Indiana statute and case law make it unequivocally clear that a private party seeking to contract with a governmental entity is under a duty to ensure than any such contract complies with Indiana statute,” even if one or more elected officials have signed the contract.

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