Ohio Appeals Court orders the Court of Claims to hear Patriot Water Treatment's case alleging destruction of public documents by ODNR

The Tenth District Court of Appeals in Franklin County recently ordered the Ohio Court of Claims to hear a case in which Patriot Water Treatment LLC (from Warren, Ohio) is "seeking more than $3 million in damages" from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), the Tribune Chronicle reports. In April, a Court of Claims judge ruled that the court lacked jurisdiction in a dispute in which the water treatment company filed a lawsuit accusing ODNR of hiding and destroying public records that "would have aided Patriot in its related environmental fight with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency" relating to the treatment of oil and gas well brine/flowback water (See our March 23, 2012, blog post – "Commission rules against Ohio EPA's order that the city of Warren cease accepting brine water from Patriot"). Patriot Water filed the lawsuit against ODNR in November. The Ohio Attorney General's office, which is representing ODNR, "had argued for dismissal, maintaining the court should have no jurisdiction to hear appeals and that Patriot's lawsuit is 'in essence, nothing more than a litany of the disputes that Patriot and (the OEPA) have already resolved'" before the Ohio Environmental Review Appeals Commission (ERAC). Patriot's attorney successfully argued that the Court of Claims was "'absolutely the right court for seeking damages,' because it is the only Ohio court where damages can be sought against a state agency," the article said. The case is Patriot Water Treatment, LLC v. Ohio Department of Natural Resources, No. 13AP-3700. For more, read the full story.

Ohio, Oil & Gas Litigation