H-BC, Gil Haugan settle school construction suit
District will pay $465,000


On Feb. 4 a settlement agreement was reached between the Hills-Beaver Creek School District and Gil Haugan Construction.

The parties met for a settlement conference, and a judgment of $465,000 was agreed upon by both parties.

According to the settlement agreement, the district has 90 days to make a complete payment to Gil Haugan.

It also stipulates that Gil Haugan must complete work itemized on a punch list that was brought to the conference by the district.

The settlement was approved by the H-BC School Board at their meeting on Monday night.

To date, the district has paid the firm $8,607,299.

The settlement was the result of a complaint filed on June 19 on behalf of the plaintiff, Gil Haugan Construction.

The complaint stated that the district was liable for an amount exceeding $483,742, plus interest, attorneys’ fees, costs and sanctions under Minnesota law.

Point 5 in the settlement states that it is a “compromise of disputed claims and that the consideration accepted and paid hereunder is not intended, nor shall it be construed by anyone to be an admission of liability by or on behalf of either party.”

The board will also be required to make a public statement, via published minutes, that it was pleased with the work Gil Haugan performed and that the construction and construction management of the project met expectations.

At Monday’s meeting the board did not discuss where the payment money would come from. Legally the district needed a final judgment in order for the district to collect funds to pay off the bill.

Earlier this fall, then board chair Gary Esselink said the board would not determine how the funds were collected until the legal process was complete.


In other board news:

•The board hired Shari Doerr as an elementary paraprofessional for the remainder of the school year.

Doerr’s schedule will be split between several grades. She was terminated in June when the board made cuts due to financial conditions.

•Additional time was added to Amy Lysne’s contract. The board added .17 FTE to her .5 FTE contract.

Lysne has been teaching in the first-grade classroom in the afternoon. Now she will be there in the morning as well. The 31 students in the class will be divided into two groups for math and reading.

•Donations were accepted from Vernon and Joyce Fick and Tammy and Ken Bos to help pay for the sixth-grade ice skating trip on Feb. 14. Any additional trip costs will be covered by the Elementary Parent Teacher Organization.


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