Oral arg. – Miss.S.Ct. -Dec. 7, 2015

At 1:30  the Court will hear the condemnation case of  City of Gulfport v. Dedeaux Utility Co. 

This is the third appeal (after three trials) arising out of Gulfport’s  1996 filing  petitions for condemnation against Orange Grove Utilities, Inc. and Dedeaux Utility Company, Inc.

At the first trial, Dedeaux’s expert valued Dedeaux’s utility system at $9,025,500.00, and Gulfport’s expert valued the system at $2,140,000.00. The jury returned a for $3,634,757.00.  Both sides appealed and the Court reversed.  City of Gulfport I, 938 So.2d 840 (Miss. 2006).

At the second trial, Dedeaux’s expert valued Dedeaux’s utility system at $9,846,288.00, and Gulfport’s expert valued the system at $3,691,328.00. The jury awarded Dedeaux $5,131,676.00. Both sides appealed.  City of Gulfport II, 63 So.3d 514 (Miss. 2011).

At the third trial, the jury awarded $8,063,981.00.  Again, both sides appealed. The City has thirteen issues with the trial including : 1) whether the trial court erred as a matter of law by requiring the parties to use different dates for valuing the assets existing on the date the Petition was filed (December 3, 1996) and valuing the assets added between the date the Petition was filed and the date the utility system was actually transferred to the City (December 20, 2004); 2) whether the trial court erred as a matter of law in denying the City’s Motion in Limine to Exclude Facilities Dedicated to the Public, causing the City to pay Dedeaux millions of dollars for facilities which were not owned by Dedeaux; 3) whether the trial court erred as a matter of law in limiting the setoff to which the City is entitled to the revenues produced by the assets added after December 3, 1996.   Dedeaux argues that the trial court erred in admitting certain testimony by the City’s expert and excluding certain testimony by Dedeaux’s expert.

Gulfport’s brief

Dedeaux Utility’s brief

Gulfport’s reply brief

Dedeaux Utility’s cross appeal reply

Watch the argument here.

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