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Va. Supreme Court Denies City of F.C. Appeal of Ruling on Water Suit

The City of Falls Church issued a statement this afternoon announcing that a three-judge panel of the Supreme Court of Virginia has refused the City of Falls Church’s petition for appeal of a ruling by Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge R. Terrence Ney regarding Count 5 of a Fairfax Water lawsuit against the City of Falls Church.

The City of Falls Church issued a statement this afternoon announcing that a three-judge panel of the Supreme Court of Virginia has refused the City of Falls Church’s petition for appeal of a ruling by Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge R. Terrence Ney regarding Count 5 of a Fairfax Water lawsuit against the City of Falls Church.

“The City is disappointed with this decision and will be filing a petition for rehearing for consideration by all members of the Supreme Court,” said F.C. City Manager Wyatt Shields. While the City’s petition for a rehearing is pending, the stay of Circuit Court Judge Ney’s ruling against the City will remain in effect until a final order is entered by the Supreme Court, according to the City.

Falls Church’s longstanding return on investment transfer from its water fund to its general fund is at issue in Count 5 of the Fairfax Water suit, and the City has reiterated that “this is something that many cities have done for many years throughout Virginia.”

The Court rulings, including the Sept. 1 Virginia Supreme Court ruling, can be viewed on the City website.

City of Falls Church Public Information Director Barbara Gordon told the News-Press this afternoon that it is her “understanding” that the ruling, if it is upheld, will require the City not only to cease and desist from taking an annual “return on investment” from its water fund, but that it will also be required to immediately return $2.2 million from the City’s general fund back to its water fund, in accordance with Judge Ney’s earlier ruling.