But it would cost them.
"I think the best way to control your destiny (and) to have no sexually oriented business in
Recently obtained transcripts of the executive session meeting indicate they also seemed to recognize the uniqueness of what
Read the minutes from the meeting.
"I guess I don't think that anybody feels entirely comfortable with this, because it's a very unusual thing to be doing," Shirley said.
The legal team further grasped the apparent futility in continuing to fight
The transcript indicates the council was told that to reject the Trident offer was to invite continued expensive, probably fruitless, litigation.
"It is likely that the city would not prevail in preventing the business from going where it is proposed to be located, and the city would end up with a damages award too," said Shirley.
Decision time and paying up
As the executive session meeting progressed it became clear how city leaders would act.
They voted 7-0 following the meeting to shell out the funds to buy out The Runway, and were applauded by many local residents for their efforts.
In accordance with the settlement agreement,
Some of the settlement money went to Stephenson's widow, said
No room for 'buyer's remorse'
During the executive session Councilman
"It's the best time for both parties to settle the case before we both start spending really serious money," Shirley answered.
It was also important for the council to make a decision and be done, Shirley advised.
"Everybody needs to get this entire transaction behind us," he said. "And one thing you don't want to do is sign this agreement, become bound to it, and then be influenced subsequently by public debate and have buyer's remorse and change your mind."
Matthews said time had begun to run out for the city legal team following a federal court hearing not long before the settlement was reached.
"We felt pretty good after the hearing that a significant order was going to be issued on behalf of Trident," he said.
Soon after the federal court hearing, the city asked to re-enter mediation, Matthews said.
Council members were concerned about the amount of money being demanded by Trident, where it would come from, whether the deal could be done as quickly as called for and public perception of their action, the transcript showed.
"It looks to me like we're, the way this is, we're admitting fault to whatever, because we're paying whatever they come up with," Braden said. "It's like we've been found guilty and now we have to pay everything."
"It looks to me like whatever way we go, we're going to pay," he said. Then added, "And I don't think we can win the thing as far as in the public opinion arena."
"Is there any way we can just put in here or do a gentleman's agreement ... they are not allowed to publicly slap us in the face...?" she asked.
(c)2014 the Northwest Florida Daily News (Fort Walton Beach, Fla.)
Visit the Northwest Florida Daily News (Fort Walton Beach, Fla.) at www.nwfdailynews.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services