Judge tosses case against Davenport

A judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Fluvanna County’s Board of Supervisors against Davenport & Co. related to a $70 million bond sale in 2008.

The suit, filed in September in Fluvanna County Circuit Court, claimed that Richmond-based Davenport misled the county into issuing a certain type of bonds that would allegedly result in higher commissions and fees for the firm.

Davenport was the county’s financial adviser and represented it in the bond sale.

The case was dismissed based on a technical legal issue involving the separation of powers between branches of government.

The county was seeking more than $18 million in damages based on unnecessary interest on the bonds.

Davenport defended itself from the start, claiming the case lacked merit. In a prepared statement issued Thursday, Davenport Chairman and CEO Coleman Wortham III said he was pleased with the results of the case.

“We have always been confident that Davenport would prevail on the merits of the case, and we remain so, because throughout our long relationship with Fluvanna County we always acted in the county’s best interest,” Wortham said in the statement.

“We are gratified that all parties will be spared the time and expense of a trial on this meritless claim.”

Until the dispute ended their relationship in 2010, Davenport had been Fluvanna County’s financial adviser for more than 15 years.

Davenport’s public finance practice does bond work and advising for dozens of municipalities in Virginia, North Carolina and Maryland.

Doug Palais, a local attorney with Eckert Seamans Cherins & Mellott, represented Fluvanna County in the case. He did not return a call by press time.

McGuireWoods represented Davenport in the case.

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Does anyone have specifics on Fluvanna’s claim? I’d be curious to hear what they alleged.