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Colonies Partners: San Bernardino County owes us $45.2 million

By in Press Enterprise on November 14, 2017

By Richard K. De Atley, Joe Nelson

San Bernardino County owes $45.2 million to Rancho Cucamonga developer Colonies Partners, the cost of civil and criminal litigation that spiraled upwards for years over a flood control basin in Upland, according to a demand letter hand-delivered Tuesday to the Board of Supervisors.

A letter outlining the informal indemnification demand, plus nearly inch-thick binders of summaries, supporting legal documents, and a breakdown of costs — including $32 million in legal bills — was sent to supervisors’ offices as well as the County Counsel, supervisors were told at their regular public meeting at the County Government Center.

RELATED: Timeline: A look at the Colonies-San Bernardino County clash from 1999 to 2017

Stephen Larson, who represented Colonies co-managing partner Jeff Burum in the criminal case, made the presentation to the board and said it was in advance of an anticipated Dec. 5 closed-session meeting to review the letter’s demands.

“As we have told the County’s attorneys on numerous occasions, Colonies sincerely wishes to end this wasteful and unnecessary dispute,” Larson read from a letter that accompanied the material.

“I am always hopeful, but I am not overly optimistic,” Larson said in an earlier interview.

“This has to stop, this loop-the-loop of this county saying, ‘I’m not going to deal with it…. I don’t have to worry about it right now, that’s going to be some other supervisor down the road who’s going to have to worry about it.’ That is the concern I have,” Larson said.

The documents say the county violated an indemnity clause and breached good faith and fair dealing covenants when it failed to meet terms protecting Colonies Partners in the $102 million settlement supervisors approved 3-2 in November 2006 to end the storm drain case with the developer.

Two years later, the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s office began investigating and […]    

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