County approves contract for legal services for civil case

Aug. 30—During a routine meeting of the Stephens County Commissioners, county officials circled back to a contract for legal services after receiving a complaint between the Pride of Texas Shows, Inc. (POTS) and Stephens County Free Fair Board.

To handle the agenda item, commissioners present at the time, Chairman Todd Churchman and Commissioner Russell Morgan, approved a contract for legal services between Stephens County Free Fair Board, Inc. and/or the Board of County Commissioners of Stephens County and the law firm of Collins, Zorn and Wagner, PLLC for provision of legal services for the case.

The Duncan Banner previously reported the company out of Texas formerly in charge of amusement rides for the Stephens County Free Fair recently filed litigation for $75,000 for a breach of contract against the Stephens County Free Fair Board.

Filed in the US Western District Court of Oklahoma on Aug. 1, plaintiff D&C Pride of Texas Shows, Inc. (POTS), through their attorney Brown & Gould, PLLC., entered the complaint on an original agreement that was supposed to last 10 years.

According to the suit, POTS has several contracts with various fairs, festivals and event production entities to provide certain amusement services.

POTS claims that on or around Aug. 2, 2015, they came to an agreement for a contract for a term of 10 years which would begin in 2016 and last until 2025.

Documents show POTS “filled” its obligations for six years, from 2016-2021, and wanted the court to know that the agreement showed four more years for the contract.

Court documents show that on or around May 13, 2022, POTS received via written correspondence from the Fair Board termination of the agreement effective immediately.

“This letter is being written to confirm that as of today 5-13-22 We, [the County Fair] will not be renewing [the Services Agreement] with [POTS] for our Stephens County Free Fair at this time,” the letter said. “We have been pleased with our prior relationship and services you have provided. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have regarding this contract termination letter.”

In the documents, the plaintiff claimed the County Fair has “no legal grounds or justification” for the termination and they have performed all conditions to recover under the agreement.

Due to the late notice according to the plaintiff, POTS “sustained damages, including but not limited to loss of future business earnings and incurred costs and is asking that amount to not exceed $75,000.”

An attorney for POTS asked the courts for a prayer for relief to rule in their favor to compensate them for the lost earnings and the costs of fees for the case.

To further clarify in a previous meeting, Morgan said the Stephens County Fair Board is completely separate from the fairgrounds in operations and is solely responsible for the operations of the county fair and the spring livestock show.

“The Fair Board is responsible for putting on the fair and the stock show and that’s it,” he said previously. “They don’t do any daily operations with the fairgrounds.”

Morgan said any decision or contracts made goes through the commissioners’ office.

The law firm of Collins, Zorn and Wagner, PLLC will represent the Fair Board with legal services for the case.

In other fair board news, county officials approved the appointment of Jeremy Smith as a Fair Board member to represent District #2.

In other Commissioner news, the county board approved:

—An ODOT pay claim for Stephens County for $8,800 in District #1.

—Three fairground agreements: one for the Oklahoma Farm Bureau annual meeting inside the Heritage and Harvest rooms on Sept. 22; one for the Red River Ranch Rodeo at the Claud Gill Arena on Sept. 24; and one for the Stephens County Coin Club Show at Territory Hall on Feb. 17-18, 2023.

Due to the Labor Day holiday, the regular meeting of the Stephens County Board of County Commissioners will convene at 9:30 am Tuesday, Sept. 6 at the Stephens County Courthouse.

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