New Bankruptcy Opinion: IN RE REDONDO CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION – Bankr. Court, D. Puerto Rico, 2016

IN RE: REDONDO CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION, Chapter 11, Debtor.

REDONDO CONSTRUCTION CORPORATION, Plaintiff,

v.

PUERTO RICO HIGHWAY AND TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY Defendant.

Case No. 02-02887 (ESL), Adv. Proc. No. 03-00192 (ESL)., 03-00194 (ESL), 03-00195 (ESL)

United States Bankruptcy Court, D. Puerto Rico.

April 21, 2016.

OPINION AND ORDER

ENRIQUE S. LAMOUTTE, Bankruptcy Judge.

Regarding the issue of interests in favor of Redondo Construction Corporation (“RCC”), on January 13, 2014, this Court entered Partial Judgment in Adv. Proc. 03-00192 (at Docket No. 322), Adv. Proc. 03-00194 (at Docket No. 283), and Adv. Proc. 03-00195 (Docket No. 280) (collectively, the “Three Partial Judgments”). [*] The Puerto Rico Highway and Transportation Authority (“PRHTA”) appealed to the United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico (the “District Court”), which affirmed the Three Partial Judgments on November 5, 2015 (Case No. 14-1365 (FAB), Docket Nos. 24 & 25). PRHTA then sought appeal before the First Circuit Court of Appeals, Case No. 15-1397, which vacated the Judgment from the District Court; ultimately, the case was remanded to this Court for the computation of prejudgment and postjudgment interests in favor of RCC. See, Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket Nos. 383-386.

To resolve those issues, on March 29, 2016 this Court scheduled a Status Conference for August 23, 2016 (Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 386). On April 4, 2016, RCC filed the Urgent Motion for Calculation of Interest Due [RCC] and for Setting Aside Status Conference (“Motion”, at Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 388; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 359; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 338).

The Motion set out the pertinent procedural background, highlighting the following: that PRHTA deposited the funds corresponding to the totality of the original Judgment by this Court (issued on August 31, 2009); that those funds were deposited in the District Court in the case that served as the very first appeal in 2010, Civil No. 10-1371 (FAB); that RCC sought to execute such original judgment, but the District Court stayed it in light of PRHTA’s judicial deposit; and, that in light of the latest remand by the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Case, No. 15-1397, “what is pending before this Court is a mathematical exercise of the interest due RCC” (Motion, at p. 6 ¶ 17). To that end, RCC argued, the August 23, 2016 Status Conference set by this Court was not necessary, and requested the disbursement of a total of $9,982,695.52 “plus interest earned on those funds, to be calculated by the Clerk” (Id., p. 6). The total, posited RCC, consisted of $9,839,413.79 in prejudgment interests, and $143,281.73 in postjudgment interests (Id., at p. 5 ¶ 16).

On April 4, 2016, this Court ordered PRHTA to file an opposition to the Motion within ten (10) days (Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 389; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 360; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 339). On April 14, 2016, PRHTA filed its opposition (“Opposition”, at Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 391; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 362; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 341).

In the Opposition, PRHTA stipulated the amount RCC posited as the prejudgment interests due ($9,839,413.79; Opposition, at p. 1 ¶ 1). However, as to postjudgment interests, PRHTA computed that the amount due was $84,153.64 (Id., at p. 2 ¶ 4). To that end, PRHTA requested this Court to

enter Judgment ordering the following disbursements from the funds deposited in Case No. 10-1371 (FAB):

a. in favor of RCC, of $9,923,567.43 plus the interest accrued over that amount, minus any applicable Clerk fees; and,

b. in favor of PRHTA, the remaining balance. Id., p. 3.

On April 15, 2016, RCC filed the Motion Conceding [PRHTA’s] Computation of Post-Judgment Interest Due [RCC] (at Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 392; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 363; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 342). As the title indicates, RCC “conced[ed] the computation of post-judgments interests” in the Opposition (at p. 2 ¶ 3). Therefore, RCC requested

that judgment be entered forthwith directing the Clerk of the United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico to effect the following disbursements from the funds on deposit in Case No. 10-1371 (FAB):

a) $9,923,567.43, plus the interest accrued over said amount, less any applicable fees, in favor of RCC; and

b) the remaining balance in favor of the PRHTA.

In light of the fact that both parties have agreed on the amounts to be disbursed, and on the manner the disbursement is to be effected, this Court hereby sets aside the Status Conference set for August 23, 2016, and grants the disbursement requested by both parties in PRHTA’s Opposition and RCC’s April 15, 2016 motion.

Conclusion

In view of the foregoing, PRHTA’s Opposition (Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 391; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 362; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 341), and RCC’s April 15, 2016 Motion Conceding . . . (Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket No. 392; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket No. 363; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket No. 342) are hereby granted.

Judgment will be entered accordingly.

SO ORDERED.

[*] The judgments were partial because, at the time, there was a pending controversy among the parties as to whether RCC was entitled to an award for extended home-office overhead damages. This Court ruled against RCC through the January 21, 2015 Opinion and Order, and entered Judgment on that same date. See, Adv. Proc. 03-00192, Docket Nos. 378 & 379; Adv. Proc. 03-00194, Docket Nos. 349 & 350; and, Adv. Proc. 03-00195, Docket Nos. 328 and 329. As such Judgments became final and unappealable, the only controversies left in this case are the awards of interests in favor of RCC.

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