Several property owners in Business Improvement District sue City of Chattanooga
Several property owners within the Business Improvement District are suing the city of Chattanooga.
They say the city did not follow state guidelines when it came to the ordinance process.
Attorney Charles Paty is one of the property owners on this lawsuit.
He says the BID has been a problem from the beginning.
"But there is a lot of people in downtown that own property....they don't want this....they don't want this,” Paty said.
He says the council passed an ordinance with little regulation.
"That’s kind of enabling language is what we call it. And so, they passed an ordinance in where everyone is saying I don't have to abide by this because there is no language that says I do,” Paty said.
The BID first failed back in June for a lack of a second motion.
And according to state statute, the same BID can't be brought up again for 12 months.
But the lawsuit states the same BID that failed was brought back up to council a week later as resolution.
Something Paty brought to council's attention during the process.
"I tried to point out to the council that all they had to do was they had to take one piece of property out and they could have gone forward with a new BID before the 12 months. They didn't do that,” Paty said.
Councilman Ken Smith said in a statement he had the same questions about the BID as the property owners in the lawsuit and isn't shocked this action is being taken.
Paty says the BID Board was the other issue.
"I don't like the idea of the money that we earn having it turned over to a private board for them to decide how it's going to be spent. We elect people in the city of Chattanooga to do that for us,” Paty said.
And the cost of the bid will ultimately hurt everyone.
"Whereas other places like us. We have a limited number of tenants and we have to pass this along to them,” Paty said.
Paty says he hopes to have this case before a judge by October.
Another name on the lawsuit is William Wise of Wise Properties
We reached out to River City on their thoughts about the lawsuit and they say they have no comment at this time.
This is a developing story.