SALT LAKE CITY — State lawmakers approved an $11.4 million settlement in the legal battle over the construction of the Timpanogos Highway during Wednesday's special session of the Legislature.
"The only good thing about this is we learned a lesson," said Senate Minority Whip Karen Mayne, D-West Valley City. "It’s a train wreck but we fixed the train wreck. From a bad thing we have a good thing."
The deal spelled out in SJR101 calls for the contractors on the state Route 92 project completed in 2012, Flatiron/Harper Joint Venture, to receive about $102 million of the $113 million in their original contract with the Utah Department of Transportation.
It also requires $8.4 million of the difference to be set aside by UDOT to make repairs to "defective work" and maintain the 6-mile highway connecting Lehi and Alpine.
The contractors also gave up $3 million in "liquidated damages," according to the settlement, because the project was finished late. The state originally sued the contractors and was counter-sued before the settlement was reached.
UDOT Executive Director Carlos Braceras said the contractors have already been paid about $100 million. He said the settlement means the transportation agency can hire new contractors to do work on the highway.
Braceras said the agency made "multiple attempts" between 2011 and 2015 to reach an agreement and is pleased with the outcome. "At the end of the day, the public is going to get what they paid for."
SJR101 easily passed both the House and the Senate.