An attorney representing Durwood Greene Construction has filed a response to a lawsuit seeking compensation for vehicles that were damaged during a road milling project on Interstate 45.

The response, filed Nov. 20 in the 212th District Court, is the first public response the construction company has given since residents started complaining in August about work the company performed on a 2.1-mile stretch of highway on I-45 between Tiki Island and Texas City.

Durwood Greene was not guilty of gross negligence, fraud or malice based on the work it did on the interstate, according to the response.

“Plaintiffs have not alleged any facts to support a claim that defendant had a specific intent to cause substantial injury to plaintiffs,” the answer asserts.

Durwood Greene Construction has not responded to numerous requests for comment.

“It appears that their primary defense will be that they share immunity with the state as long as they are in compliance with their contract,” attorney William Underwood III said. “All of the information we have to date indicates that they were not in compliance.”

Underwood is representing almost 50 people seeking compensation for vehicles they said were damaged during the road milling project.

Durwood Greene was awarded a $3.32 million contract from the Texas Department of Transportation for the project, which requires the company to keep the roadways safe for travel and in passable condition during projects, according to the filing.

The lawsuit seeks between $200,000 and $1 million in damages, records show.

Nov. 20 was the final day for attorneys representing Durwood Greene to respond to the initial accusations.

PLUMBING PROBLEMS

A Harris County company is suing several companies in a Galveston County district court, arguing that they failed to disclose ongoing plumbing issues at a piece of property in League City.

8601 Southwest Freeway LP filed the lawsuit against Vault Investments, BDH Holdings, Barry Hardy and Dale Hardy Oct. 24 in the 405th District Court, asserting that all parties on Sept. 8, 2015, had reached an agreement to buy commercial property at 303 East Main St., League City.

The defendants at the time said they were not aware of any issues with the property except for a malfunctioning first-floor water heater, the lawsuit asserts.

The property in March 2016 then began having plumbing issues with draining lines and officials discovered that plumbing under the building was failing and would cost $7,500 to dig up and replace, the lawsuit asserts.

Officials in June had to pay another $28,000 to excavate 45 feet of tunnel to correct more plumbing issues, the lawsuit asserts.

“Despite these costly repairs, further investigation revealed that the existing cast iron under the building is in poor condition, flaking and holding water in multiple areas,” according to the lawsuit.

The defendants were aware of the issues before selling the property, according to the lawsuit.

The defendants filed a general denial of the accusations Nov. 17, court records show.

CONTRACTOR COMPLAINT

A Galveston County couple is suing a contractor hired to build a house on the West End of Galveston, asserting that he hasn’t done what he said he would.

Charles and Angelita Manis filed a lawsuit Oct. 24 against James Casey in the 56th District Court, asserting that they had agreed to a contract Aug. 2 to construct a home in the Indian Beach subdivision and had paid $5,000 as an initial payment.

Casey took the cashier’s check Aug. 7, but then failed to do any work, according to the lawsuit.

Casey then asked for $800 to perform a survey of the lot, but didn’t actually perform the survey, according to the lawsuit.

The Manises are seeking less than $100,000 in damages related to the contract, according to the lawsuit.

The defendant has not yet filed a response to the accusations in the lawsuit, court records show.

Matt deGrood: 409-683-5230; matt.degrood@galvnews.com

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