Who should pay for Springboro dam repairs? Fight continues in court.

The owners of the Marketplace at Settlers Walk are weighing whether to solve issues with a substandard dam between the shopping center and homes in the Springboro planned community without waiting for resolution of the state lawsuit brought to force action on the dam.

The lawsuit, filed in August 2019, claims the Settlers Walk Homeowners Association (HOA) and MCS Development, owner of the strip center anchored by Dorothy Lane Market (DLM), failed to take action after multiple state safety inspections of the Remick Lake dam found it needs repairs.

RELATED: State sues over Springboro dam safety

“My client is looking to move forward individually,” Michael Sandner, lawyer for MCS, a company including DLM owner Norman Main and partners, said last week.

The dam is located on a large pond off Remick Boulevard and between homes and the shopping center at the entrance to Settlers Walk off Ohio 741, Main Street in Springboro.

If the dam failed, the lawsuit claims its spillways would direct floodwater toward a day care center, the strip mall and eight homes located downstream.

Mediation failed to settle the dispute over who owns and should pay to fix or eliminate the dam, satisfying an order of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

“We attempted to resolve the matter in mediation on March 3, but it was unsuccessful,” said Dominic Binkley, public Information officer for the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, representing ODNR.

Binkley declined to answer further questions, because the case is pending.

RELATED:Springboro dam lawsuit moves toward settlement or trial

Last month, HOA lawyer Scott Oxley turned over evidence sought by MCS after Sandner urged the judge to fine Oxley for failing to comply.

“My client is disappointed that the homeowners association has not been more actively involved in addressing the ODNR,” Sandner said, adding he was still reviewing Oxley’s submission.

“It was not what I expected to receive,” he said.

Oxley said he wasn’t authorized to speak for the HOA. Efforts to reach the HOA board have been unsuccessful.

Sandner said MCS was seeking cost estimates for satisfying the state, while expecting to get compensation from the neighborhood association.

“The order needs to be complied with,” Sandner said. “We’re ready to finalize an agreement with an engineer.”

Otherwise, a three-day trial is scheduled in November.

About the Author