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Maxim Sewerage Corp. v. Ridings

Decided: October 18, 1993.

MAXIM SEWERAGE CORPORATION, A NEW JERSEY PUBLIC UTITILITES CORPORATION, PLAINTIFF,
v.
THE MONMOUTH RIDINGS, AND LEONARD COHEN, INDIVIDUALLY AND T/A THE MONMOUTH RIDINGS, DEFENDANTS. THE MONMOUTH RIDINGS, THIRD-PARTY PLAINTIFF, V. WOODSTONE BUILDERS, INC., A NEW JERSEY CORPORATION, VIKING ENTERPRISES, A NEW JERSEY PARTNERSHIP, PHILIP SOLONDZ, DANIEL SOLONDZ, MICHAEL SOLONDZ, AND LEONARD SOLONDZ, THIRD-PARTY DEFENDANTS.



Wecker

Wecker

Civil Action

DECISION AND OPINION

WECKER, J.S.C.

Defendants The Monmouth Ridings and Leonard Cohen (collectively "The Ridings") move for leave to amend a counterclaim against plaintiff Maxim Sewerage Corporation ("Maxim") and to similarly amend a third-party complaint against Woodstone Builders, Inc. ("Woodstone") Viking Enterprises ("Viking"), Philip Solondz, Daniel Solondz and Leonard Solondz (but not Michael Solondz). The Ridings is a real estate developer with property in Howell Township which it seeks to subdivide for residential homes. Maxim is a local sewerage company, a public utility, with a franchise to serve the area of Howell Township were The Ridings' property is located. Viking and Woodstone are also real estate developers in the same area. Woodstone has already developed a 630-home subdivision and Viking plans to develop an adjacent area. The principals of Viking are Daniel and Philip Solondz, who are brothers. They are also the principals of Maxim. The principals of Woodstone are Leonard and Michael Solondz, the sons of Philip and Daniel, respectively.

Maxim's original complaint against The Ridings sought to enforce the terms of a 1989 Sewer Service Agreement, which was also the subject of proceedings before the Board of Public Utilities ("BPU"). Settlement of the BPU matter included a new sewer service agreement. The relief sought in this court included the right to retain funds deposited by The Ridings, and a declaration that this court has jurisdiction over all but the limited issues that were before the BPU. The Ridings' original counterclaim and third-party complaint alleged economic torts, breaches of contract and statutory duties, and sought damages, all arising out of the negotiation and execution of the 1989 Sewer Service Agreement.

The proposed amendments each add four counts, which are virtually identical. The new counts are entitled as follows:

Conspiracy to Violate Federal Counterclaim Count 5

RICO: 18 U.S.C.A. § 1962(d) Third-party complaint

Count 3

RICO: Violation of 18 U.S.C.A. Counterclaim Count 6

§ 1962(c) Third-party complaint

Count 4

State RICO: Violation of Counterclaim Count 7

N.J.S.A. 2C:41-1 Third-party complaint

Count 5

Common Law Fraud Counterclaim Count 8

Third-party complaint

Count 6

The newly framed counts incorporate by reference the factual allegations of the original counts, which are entitled as follows:

Conspiracy to Tortiously Counterclaim Count 1/Third-

Interfere with Prospective party complaint Count 1

Economic Advantage

Tortious Interference with Counterclaim Count 2/Third-

Economic and Contractual party complaint Count 1

Relations

Breach of Contract Counterclaim Only: Count 3

Breach of Duty by Public Counterclaim ...


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