On Thursday, December 15th, The Honorable Judge Elaine H. Palmer who presides over the 215th District Court of Harris County, Texas, awarded to ESD 48 all remaining disputed items being held by West I-10 in a final summary judgment. A final summary judgment is when the Court makes a legal decision about a case without a jury trial because there are no disputed factual issues that would affect the outcome of the case. It is hoped that this decision will bring an end to the legal battle between ESD 48 and the West I-10 Fire Department, the former entity contracted to provide emergency services to ESD 48. Judge Palmer, after hearing oral arguments and reviewing over 3,000 pages of evidence presented by the District, not only found in favor of ESD 48 and granted its motion for final summary judgment, but dismissed all of West I-10’s claims against ESD 48.
This ruling by the Court was far reaching and not limited to the vehicles and equipment in question. It also settled a number of claims made by West I-10 throughout the 18-month court battle (please see the attached court order). The Court also found in favor of ESD 48 on West I-10’s breach of contract claim. This ended West I-10’s central allegation that ESD 48 violated the contract between the two parties.
“Now that the Court has delivered its ruling and dismissed all of West I-10’s claims, we hope West I-10 will choose to quickly return all of the vehicles and equipment so they can again be used to protect the citizens whose tax dollars paid for them,” said Fire Chief and Emergency Management Director Jeff Hevey.
HCESD 48 will be holding an informational meeting on Tuesday evening (Dec 20th) at 6pm for our members and the public to share this news and answer what questions we can about the ruling and its impact on the District moving forward. This meeting will take place at our new Administration building in the Station 5 Complex at 21201 Morton Road, Katy TX 77449 and will be immediately followed by our monthly ESD 48 meeting which is always open to the public begins at 7pm.