Feb, 27, 2017

The county has settled a portion of the larger Lake Point rock mine lawsuit as an arbitrator found that the county “failed to take public records requests seriously,” court records show.

Lake Point, just east of Lake Okeechobee, sued the county in 2013 saying the county breached their agreement and, later, the rock mine also sued over public records law violations alleging, in part, that the county took too long to produce public records.

The arbitrator’s findings, which the County Commission last week voted not to object to, leave Martin County on the hook to pay $371,801 to Lake Point for attorney’s fees.

According to arbitrator Howard Googe, the county and some commissioners had a pattern of failure to comply with Lake Point’s public records requests.

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