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Financial impact of development judgment unclear

A judgment handed down by a federal jury two weeks ago orders the city to pay a developer $6.5 million

Forest Grove City Council heard from a pair of citizens upset with the a judgment handed down by a federal jury two weeks ago, ordering the city to pay a developer $6.5 million.

In the case, David Hill Development argued city staff thwarted efforts by builders to quickly build out its subdivision, known as 'The Parks at Forest Grove.'

At Monday's city council session, Douglas Lund, owner of Advanced Injection Molding in Forest Grove, said the jury verdict showed that the city has an anti-business climate and wanted to know what 'disciplinary action' will be taken against employees who demonstrated an 'abuse of power.'

Aldie Howard, who worked as a consultant to McDonald, went a step further, saying Sykes and Foster should be fired.

'The sad truth is that the City of Forest Grove staff and others did everything they could to frustrate the developer,' Howard said.

Howard also wondered aloud about what share of the award won't be covered by insurance. 'The word on the street is that this debacle will cost the city $2 million,' he said. 'Where will that money come from?'

Paul Downey, the city's finance director, said the city's insurer is still sorting out how much of the judgment will be paid by the city's $5 million insurance policy.