Suffolk County ordered to pay $10.4M for breach of contract

MarketsAssociated Press

A federal judge has ruled that Suffolk County must pay $10.4 million for breaking a contract with a private firm hired to install solar panels at a Long Island rail station parking lot.

Newsday reports (http://nwsdy.li/2fkzI7n ) U.S. Magistrate Judge Anne Shields wrote in her decision that county officials began "intentionally stalling" the Ronkonkoma project beginning in January 2012.

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Shields found that EDF Renewable Development Inc. is entitled to the money it spent on the solar panels, steel and other development costs connected to the project.

The judge wrote that the county's actions "made contractual compliance ... impossible."

Shields' ruling comes as the county is struggling with a structural deficit of as much as $179.7 million in Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone's $2.97 billion budget for 2017

The county plans to appeal the ruling.

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Information from: Newsday, http://www.newsday.com