MOUNT VERNON, NY – Creative Direction Construction & Design, LLC (“Creative”) announces it has reached a settlement, Wednesday afternoon, to end a contract dispute with the City of Mount Vernon relating to the renovation of the 3rd Street Firehouse. The settlement brings to a close a contentious litigation that began as a simple contract matter – one that was quickly resolved in Creative (CDCD)’s favor by order of the Supreme Court of New York almost two years ago. Unfortunately for the citizens of Mount Vernon, the case soon became intertwined with unproductive political disagreements which delayed a full and final resolution of the matter, before returning back to the same judge, the Honorable Judge Sam D. Walker, who had already ruled in CDCD’s favor..
Rather than honor its contractual commitments, The Thomas Administration chose to waste taxpayer money on legal fees alleging baseless counterclaims in order to delay payment and, more importantly, to punish Creative’s President, City Councilman André Wallace, over political differences he has had with the current Mayor Richard W. Thomas.
The Thomas Administration even called for the New York State Department of Labor (DOL) to investigate CDCD for not paying prevailing wages are reason for not paying CDCD. Wallace’s company prevailed when the DOL completed its investigation into allegations made against CDCD and owner and president, André Wallace on Thursday, April 27, 2017. The DOL has ruled that neither Wallace nor his company violated Sections 220:8, 220-b.2 (Article 8) and 235.5 (Article 9); and have not, “…been found to be paying less than the prevailing rate of wages or supplements…”DOL found
Councilman Wallace agreed to settle the case today in order to save the City of Mount Vernon the considerable expense of a trial and subsequent appeals. As part of the settlement, the City of Mount Vernon agreed to dismiss all of its counterclaims against CDCD. Creative also agreed to waive all interest on the judgment above and beyond the contract amount in dispute and legal fees incurred, saving the City over $60,000 in accrued interest.
“It became clear to me during this process that, as an elected official in Mount Vernon, my primary loyalty and highest priority has to be the best interest of the citizens of this city,” said Councilman Wallace. “Mount Vernon’s elected leaders can never forget they serve this city first and foremost. In good conscience, I could not let this administration continue to throw good money after bad, depriving its citizens of valuable services they need and deserve. I had the power to stop it from happening by settling this case. And, that’s what I did today. I look forward to getting back to work for the City of Mount Vernon.”
Creative was represented by Henry C. Chan, Esq. of Wilson & Chan, LLP. “We are extremely satisfied with the outcome,” said Mr. Chan. “This case was over a long time ago, and the administration has been wasting time and money ever since. Our client chose to place the interests of the City of Mount Vernon above his own and bring this matter to a close. We wish him continued success in the City Council.”