This case was last updated from PACER on 08/27/2021 at 06:36:37 (UTC).

Town of Indian River Shores v. City of Vero Beach et al

Case Summary

On August 26, 2021, Town Of Indian River Shores (“Plaintiff” or “Town”), represented by David Bruce May, Jr. and Kevin W Cox of Holland, Knight LLP, filed an antitrust action against City Of Vero Beach (“Defendant” or “City”), Robert Brackett, Rey Neville, Honey Minuse, Bob McCabe, & others (collectively, with the City, the “City Defendants''), seeking declaratory and injunctive relief, along with attorneys’ fees and costs, for the City’s alleged monopolistic abuse of the Town and its residents by reducing competition for the Essential Water Services. This case was filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Florida with Judge Aileen M. Cannon presiding. 

 

In the complaint, the Plaintiff alleged that, “The Town has agreed with the City, through a Franchise Agreement attached as Exhibit A, for the City to occupy the Town’s right of way and provide Essential Water Services to the Town and its inhabitants for a limited period of time. The Town’s powers to extend such rights to the City for only a limited duration are expressly authorized under Florida law.” “The Town believes that Indian River County (the “County”) could provide Essential Water Services to the Town and its residents at a higher quality and at a lower cost than the City.”

 

The Plaintiff further alleged that, “On or about March 24, 2021, however, the City’s Manager wrote to the County Administrator asserting that the Town’s ability to obtain the Essential Services from the County was foreclosed by an agreement among the City and County dated August 18,1989 (the “Market Allocation Agreement”). Thus, the City has disputed the County’s right to provide the Essential Water Services to the Town, and has disputed the Town’s right to receive Essential Water Services from the County.” 

 

The Plaintiff also alleged that, “The City’s assertions demonstrate that the Market Allocation Agreement constitutes a horizontal market allocation, and is therefore a per se violation of federal antitrust law. United States v. Topco Assocs., Inc., 405 U.S. 596, 608 (1972). Such agreements are deemed “horizontal” restraints and presumed illegal “regardless of whether the parties split a market within which both do business or whether they merely reserve one market for one and another for the other.” Palmer v. BRG of Ga., Inc., 498 U.S. 46, 49-50 (1990) (per curiam).” 

 

The only claim for relief laid down by the Plaintiff is for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief, wherein the Plaintiff alleged that the City’s monopolistic abuse of the Town and its residents reduces competition for the Essential Water Services, which in turn will lead to higher prices and lower quality services, the harms that the antitrust laws are designed to protect consumers against.

 

In its prayer for relief, the Plaintiff requested the Court to determine that pursuant to federal antitrust law, the Market Allocation Agreement is unlawful and void for any purpose and permanently enjoin the City Defendants from asserting any rights to an alleged territorial allocation based on the Market Allocation Agreement, or engaging in any other anticompetitive conduct, that would prevent the Town from obtaining Essential Water Services from the County or otherwise. Plaintiff further requested the Court to grant the Town such other relief as the Court deems proper under the circumstances, including any additional injunctive relief which may be required, and award the Town its attorneys’ fees and costs.

 

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Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    2:21-CV-14354

  • Filing Date:

    08/26/2021

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Other - Antitrust

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

Aileen M. Cannon

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

Town of Indian River Shores

Defendants

City of Vero Beach

Robert Brackett

Rey Neville

Honey Minuse

Bob McCabe

Dick Winger

Monte Falls

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorneys

David Bruce May, Jr.

Attorney at Holland , Knight LLP

315 S. Calhoun Street, Suite 600

Tallahassee, FL 32301

Kevin W Cox

Attorney at Holland , Knight LLP

315 S. Calhoun Street, Suite 300

Tallahassee, FL 32301

 

Court Documents

1 #3

Exhibit Composite B-Service Agreement

1 #2

Exhibit A-Franchise Agreement

1 #1

Civil Cover Sheet

1 #1

Main Document

 

Docket Entries

  • 08/26/2021
  • Docket(#2) Clerks Notice of Judge Assignment to Judge Aileen M. Cannon. Pursuant to 28 USC 636(c), the parties are hereby notified that the U.S. Magistrate Judge Shaniek M. Maynard is available to handle any or all proceedings in this case. If agreed, parties should complete and file the Consent form found on our website. It is not necessary to file a document indicating lack of consent. Pro se (NON-PRISONER) litigants may receive Notices of Electronic Filings (NEFS) via email after filing a Consent by Pro Se Litigant (NON-PRISONER) to Receive Notices of Electronic Filing. The consent form is available under the forms section of our website. (jao) (Entered: 08/26/2021)

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  • 08/26/2021
  • View Court Documents
  • Docket(#1) COMPLAINT against All Defendants. Filing fees $ 402.00 receipt number AFLSDC-14961381, filed by Town of Indian River Shores. (Attachments: #1 Civil Cover Sheet, #2 Exhibit A-Franchise Agreement, #3 Exhibit Composite B-Service Agreement)(Cox, Kevin) (Entered: 08/26/2021)

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