Costco moves to intervene in lawsuit against St. Cloud

On Monday, Stearns County Judge Shan Wang heard arguments on Costco's motion to intervene. He has 90 days to rule on the motion.

 

Author: Jenny Berg, St. Cloud Times

via KARE (MN) - December 4, 2018

 

ST. CLOUD, Minn. - Costco Wholesale is asking permission to be added to the lawsuit a group filed against the city of St. Cloud.

 

The group, Citizens for Government Accountability, filed a complaint in August claiming the city's sale of Heritage Park land to Costco was a violation of Minnesota's subsidy law because the land was sold for less than fair market value. The complaint contends amount of the subsidy is at least $6 million.

 

On Monday, Stearns County Judge Shan Wang heard arguments on Costco's motion to intervene. He has 90 days to rule on the motion.

 

The city responded to the lawsuit by denying it sold part of Heritage Park to Costco for less than market value and asked the court to dismiss a complaint against the city. Costco Wholesale purchased about 19 acres of Heritage Park for $3.53 million. The city and Costco closed on the deal on July 27.

 

In court documents, Costco states it is necessary to join the lawsuit because Citizens for Government Accountability "strategically" filed its action only against St. Cloud even though it knew Costco and the city signed a purchase agreement in February and closed on the property in July, and Costco has visibly begun to develop the property for its retail store. Representing Costco is Minneapolis-based Briggs and Morgan.

 

The firm representing the city, Bloomington-based Iverson Reuvers Condon, submitted a letter supporting Costco's motion to intervene.

 

"Costco has standing to intervene because the requested equitable relief will likely involve or affect Costco's property interests," the letter states.

 

"While CGA is now arguing they are not seeking a rescission of such sale; they have requested unspecified equitable relief from the court which may entail rescission," the letter continues.

 

"It could adversely affect Costco so they should be able to represent themselves in the lawsuit," Jason Kuboushek of Iverson Reuvers Condon said Monday.

 

Attorneys for Citizens for Government Accountability filed a document opposing Costco's application for intervention stating Costco's attempt to intervene "goes far outside the bounds of the statute." Representing Citizens for Government Accountability is Boston-based Foley & Lardner...

 

more

https://www.kare11.com/article/news/costco-moves-to-intervene-in-lawsuit-against-st-cloud/89-620731717