GUNTERSVILLE, Ala – A concerned Guntersville resident is trying to pump the brakes on a mixed-use development coming to the area. This comes after the City of Guntersville announced that a private company will lease two sections of land to construct the Guntersville City Harbor Development.
Joel Kennamer has filed a civil suit against the mayor, city councilors, and Lakeside Investments LLC asking a judge to void the city’s lease to the company and to stop all construction while the lawsuit plays out in court.
According to a statement from his attorney, Kennamer supports economic development but wants the citizens to have a voice on this issue, rather than a few elected officials deciding the use of the property.
Kennamer says if the land at City Harbor that is currently being used as a public recreation area is developed, it needs to benefit the public – not a private developer.
In a lawsuit he filed against the city, Kennamer claims the city did not have the authority to lease the property to Lakeside Investments LLC without a public vote. He says the ordinance granting the lease is in violation of the law. He also asks the judge to void the lease between the city and Lakeside Investment LLC.
Both the city and the company have both filed motions to dismiss the lawsuit.
In a statement provided to WHNT News 19, an attorney the city’s attorney the city followed all laws in regards to this matter.
It goes on to say, “This is not Mr. Kennamer’s first lawsuit against the city and it appears to be part of a continuing vendetta against the city.”
Kennemer’s lawsuit also asks the court to prevent the developer from breaking ground while this matter is sorted out.
Lakeside Investments LLC’s motion to dismiss says stopping the project could result in the company losing more than one million dollars. It says Kennamer’s benefit from stopping the project does not outweigh the hardship the company could face.
A court date has been set for July 8th for a judge to hear the motions to dismiss the case.