The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania upheld the lower court ruling that the Oley Valley School District owes Amthor Steel $2,187,089.35 for work performed on the Middle School.
The case was heard by a three judge panel, the Honorable President Judge Bonnie Leadbetter, the Honorable Judge P. Kevin Brobson, and the Honorable Senior Judge Jim Flaherty.
According to court documents, the district had three contentions. First, they did not receive a fair hearing from an arbitration panel. Second, the arbitration panel’s reward to the contractor was the result of misconduct and irregularity. Finally, there was a failure to adhere to procedural rules and a failure to rule on pending objections.
President Judge Bonnie Leadbetter, wrote a detailed opinion that concluded the district’s reasons in their petition to vacate the award to Amthor Steel was without merit.
She affirmed Amthor Steel’s lawsuit the district owes the contractor for their work.
At the onset of the construction project, the board set aside only $1,400,000 in the Capital Projects Fund to pay the company. There has been no public explanation how the nearly $700,000 shortfall will be covered.
The district has spent nearly $500,000 defending this lawsuit. The board never publicly voted on the expenditure of funds for legal expenses associated with the case. The Sunshine Law requires a public vote on all expenditures by a school district.