Lakewood taxpayers will take a substantial hit as a result of losing a lawsuit to Crystal Lake today.
The ruling, by Judge Thomas Meyer in McHenry County Circuit Court, found for the City of Crystal Lake in its dispute over payment for fire protection with the Village of Lakewood.
Meyer agreed with Crystal Lake’s motion for summary judgment. Summary judgments are different from directed verdicts in that the judge has written briefs from both sides to study. In this case, both sides asked for summary judgments and the judge agreed with Crystal Lake’s argument.
Two contracts were the basis of the arguments.
Lakewood harkened back to one signed in 1982, while Crystal Lake based its argument on a 1992 agreement.
In 1982’s, Lakewood argued that payments were to be made during the year of service. Lakewood presented receipts from that year forward.
In the 1992, contract, which Lakewood argued was signed under duress, the language read that Crystal Lake would be paid after the fact. Crystal Lake argued that ever in 1982, payments were being made for the year before.
Meyer deferred a decision regarding damages until June 2nd.
Over $400,000 is at stake in the case. Lakewood has 1,368 homes, so it figures out to something in the neighborhood of $300 per household, which is less than the per home cost of the annual Red Tail Golf Course bonds payoff has been.
Lakewood has a budget of about $2.1 million.