News Release: TriMet wins legal challenge regarding Clackamas County’s commitment to light rail project

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Judge rules County breached its contractual commitments regarding Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project

Judge Henry C. Breithaupt today ruled in favor of TriMet’s lawsuit regarding Clackamas County’s commitment to the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project agreements. The Court ruled that Clackamas County breached its contractual commitments to the project and that it must now honor its commitments supporting the construction of the line or pay monetary damages.

The Court said that two recent ballot measures from September 2012 and May 2013 do not “…excuse performance by Clackamas County of its obligations under the IGA and Supplemental IGA.”

In referencing the IGAs, the Court also noted that, “It is important to recognize that those agreements were acts by the parties in a long string of actions by each of the parties…for the purpose of carrying forward a common decision to build the light rail system…”

“We’re pleased that the Court upheld the long-standing commitments that TriMet and the County have made,” said TriMet General Manager Neil McFarlane. “We also remain committed to working with the County while it completes its final obligations to the project.”

Construction on the Portland-Milwaukie project is more than 40 percent complete and set to open in September 2015.

About the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project
The 7.3-mile project is the region’s sixth MAX construction project to be built and extends from the terminus of the MAX Green and Yellow lines at Portland State University in Downtown Portland to South Waterfront, SE Portland, Milwaukie and North Clackamas County. About the project:

• 7.3 miles
• 10 stations
• The first of its kind multi-modal bridge over the Willamette River that will carry light rail, buses, bikes, pedestrians and a future Portland Streetcar extension, but no private vehicles.
• Opens in September 2015
• Expands the MAX system to 60 miles and 97 stations

Project partners
The Federal Transit Administration, State of Oregon, Clackamas County, Metro, City of Milwaukie, Multnomah County, City of Oregon City, Oregon Department of Transportation, City of Portland, Portland Development Commission and TriMet.