Judge throws out Barrett-TDOT lawsuit

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A Davidson County judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Murfreesboro-based Barrett Firearms Manufacturing against the Tennessee Department of Transportation over an access road to the company's Rutherford County plant.

In 2009, Barrett filed suit against Rutherford County and the Tennessee Department of Transportation, alleging TDOT’s refusal to widen Miller Lane near Epps Mill Road has cost the company.

In 2004, Barrett Firearms received a $40 million contract from the U.S. Department of Defense to produce the company’s .50-caliber rifles for U.S. military snipers in Iraq.

The company’s current 20,000 square foot facility and 60 employees were unable to complete the contract without a 48,000 square foot expansion and the addition of 50 employees.

Barrett said he proposed extending the Rutherford County road at the company’s expense. The extension required TDOT to move a fence adjacent to I-24.

TDOT said the access road would jeopardize the state’s federal road funding.

Davidson County Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle in a ruling handed down Sept. 22 found that state agencies like TDOT are immune from breach of contract lawsuits.

Earlier this year, State Rep. Donna Rowland, company owner Ronnie Barrett’s wife, tried to push legislation through the Tennessee General Assembly requiring TDOT to build the road.


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Barrett Firearms, Donna Rowland, General Assembly, Ronnie Barrett, TDOT, Tennessee
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Members Opinions:
October 06, 2010 at 6:17pm
okay, Ronnie, now take your toy and move to another sandbox like you promised.

good riddance.
October 06, 2010 at 9:16pm
and 110 jobs leave Rutherford County......
October 06, 2010 at 10:41pm
JoesM, first of all its not a toy, scares me you think that and second you got any better jobs lined up for these people?
October 07, 2010 at 7:50am
Barrett Firearms was been a great community member and has kept jobs local instead of shipping them overseas. This corporation has tried and tried to keep the people working in Murfreesboro but now the government is backing out on their own word. This is horrible.

Barrett was evening going to pay for this SHORT roadway at his own expense!!!

Up next in the news: State and Local Umemployment Rate Edges Higher while Incoming Tax Revenues Decreases.

Original Article from the Murfreesboro Post:
October 07, 2010 at 2:06pm
Doesn't anyone know the law of success..."go ahead and move the fence, pave the road and then ask for forgiveness." Forgiveness is easier to get than permission, especially when something is this political. I mean just remember back to Bill Clinton.
October 07, 2010 at 2:18pm
"Earlier this year, State Rep. Donna Rowland, company owner Ronnie Barrett’s wife, tried to push legislation through the Tennessee General Assembly requiring TDOT to build the road."....Is it just me or was this not a "conflict of interest???"
October 07, 2010 at 3:45pm
The legislation part of it likely was a conflict of interest... but isn't all of this denial of right to build the road a political game?

If you have not been to the area and have not seen how easy it would be for the road to put into place, you should. It is laughable to think Mr. Barrett's request is unreasonable. The denial to let him build extension, especially at his own expense is the unreasonable part of the story.
October 09, 2010 at 7:02am
I say build the extension and tie it into I24 and put Joesmontana on it and tell him not to stop driving until he finds a place he likes, GOOD RIDDANCE TO HIM.
October 09, 2010 at 12:40pm
The state is cutting their nose to spite it's face. This county doesn't need any more unemployed people.
October 11, 2010 at 12:24pm
In an economy that needs jobs, this is another brilliant decision by the dimwits at TDOT. Perhaps we should consider downsizing them!
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