The opening of the new Saint John Law Courts is being delayed after problems were found with the heating system. (Saint John Police)

A Saint John councillor says the city could be facing a multi-million dollar lawsuit if it doesn't work out how much it still owes on the new police headquarters.

Bill Farren said the construction company Pomerleau Incorporated has filed court documents seeking millions in unpaid fees for the $42-million Peel Plaza project.

The project is also about $650,000 over its targeted cost, with another $350,000 anticipated, but still within the seven- to 12-per cent price overrun budgeted into the project.

"There's a difference of opinion between the developer and the city staff that are looking after this project. City staff don't think the change in work orders adds to as much as the developer thinks they are and this is what they're in the process of doing, is just negotiating which side is right in making sure we're getting the right dollar value."

The opening of the new Saint John Law Courts building was delayed after some pipes burst in January.

Farren said he is hopeful the matter will be settled out of court.