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YOUNGSTOWN Store sues county for storage of furniture



Published: Tue, January 1, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Commissioners held off on delivery of the furniture until they know where the 911 center will be.

By BOB JACKSON

VINDICATOR COURTHOUSE REPORTER

YOUNGSTOWN -- A local furniture store is suing Mahoning County for fees it claims to be owed for storing new furniture and partitions for the county 911 offices.

County officials, though, say storage fees were never a part of the deal.

The suit was filed in common pleas court by James & amp; Weaver Inc., 22 W. Wood St. It asks for a court order allowing the company to sell the furniture and use the proceeds to offset the storage and legal costs.

In the alternative, the company asks that the county be made to pay the storage costs plus interest.

What happened: County Administrator Gary Kubic said the county bought furniture for the 911 offices more than a year ago, but held off on having it delivered and installed until after a study that's being done by a consulting firm.

The recommendations will include where the 911 center should be located. It's in the county administration building on West Boardman Street, but commissioners are mulling whether to move it to the county jail or into its own building.

The consultant was hired in December, so a recommendation won't be ready for some time.

The lawsuit says the office furniture, which was bought through the state's purchasing program, was delivered to James & amp; Weaver for storage in December 2000.

Adding up: In November, the company notified commissioners that storage charges had reached $15,850 and would continue to accrue at a rate of $25 per day until the county took delivery, the suit says. The charge is now more than $17,000.

Kubic said that there is no mention of storage costs in the purchase agreement, and that the store had in fact agreed to waive those costs in exchange for getting the furniture contract.

"James & amp; Weaver wanted the business and told us there would be no storage costs," Kubic said. "They told us it could stay there until we needed it. Now they're changing their minds."

Atty. Michael J. Kelley of Youngstown, who filed the suit for James & amp; Weaver, could not be reached to comment.

Bjackson@vindy.com




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