Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

Germantown slapped with lawsuit after water crisis


GERMANTOWN, Tenn. — The City of Germantown was hit with a lawsuit over its water crisis, with a local attorney demanding documents showing what happened and when.

Attorney Kevin Snider, who lives and works in Germantown, is now suing the city on behalf of clients who want answers about the recent water contamination.

“We’re one of the few litigation firms out here in Germantown and people just want answers,” Snider said.

On July 27, Snyder sent a letter and an open records request to the City, seeking documentation, reports and records from water testing, procedures that caused the water contamination and what’s being done to prevent it from re-occurring.

It also requests the City keep all records pertaining to the diesel spill that contaminated the water supply last month.

Snider said by law the city had seven days to respond, but ignored his request. He filed a lawsuit Monday.

“You mean to tell me that, from the time we gave a request on July 27, to now you don’t have a single document that you can give us right now and in particular, why that’s important. Have you said the city drinking water is safe on July 27? Why can’t we at least see those documents,” Snider said.

The lawsuit asks for a judge to intervene and determine if Germantown is required to provide documents. It also seeks legal fees.

The day the lawsuit was filed, Germantown responded to the records request saying it was impractical and the office was still retrieving, reviewing and redacting documents. They also said it would be September 5 before they could provide records and or determine a further response

“I mean, seriously, you’re saying the water is okay to drink on July 27. But you can’t produce documents till September 5th. That is unacceptable under any stretch of the imagination. And the reason we need to have court intervention in this you know that 4, 5, 6 weeks,” Snider said.

WREG asked the City of Germantown for an interview about the suit. They forwarded us the letter they sent to Snider Monday, denying they were slow in responding to the records request and saying some initial documents should be available at the end of this week.

In its response letter, the City of Germantown also calls on Snider to drop the lawsuit or they would seek attorneys fees and expenses for having to defend a baseless lawsuit.

The entire issue has folks in Germantown wanting answers.

“We want to be able to verify that what the city is telling everybody is in fact true that the water is safe to drink, that everything was the way they said it happened,” Snider said.

Snider said he has no plans to withdraw his lawsuit unless the city begins providing documents.

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