Danny Williams claims St. John's acting in 'bad faith' when it comes to Galway development

Former premier Danny Williams is asking a judge to order that St. John's city council make decisions on permits for Galway, and allow Williams to take the city to court.

City says it will file 'detailed response to defend the allegations'

The first model home in the Galway development was officially opened to the public in June 2017. (Cal Tobin/CBC)

Former premier Danny Williams is asking the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador to help end an ongoing dispute with the city of St. John's that he says is holding up Galway's development.

Williams and his lawyer, Jerome Kennedy, have filed a court application asking a judge to rule that the city has "exceeded its authority," and order that Galway development agreements be decided by city council, not city staff.

It's the latest battle in Williams's ongoing war with the city.

A war that sources say is holding up a new $30-million-dollar Costco building in Galway and a list of people waiting to build homes in the west-end development.
Danny Williams served as premier of Newfoundland and Labrador from 2003 to 2010. (CBC)

Williams said more than $95-million dollars has been spent on or committed to phase one of the development to date.

He's contended all along that other developers in other parts of the city have received preferential treatment.

Last June after a public dispute with the city over who should foot the bill for a roundabout at a Galway entrance, Williams agreed to pay for it.

Application filed

In an application filed to Supreme Court on Thursday, Williams asked that a judge keep the City of St. John's from asking him to give up his right to take the city to court before it issues development permits for Galway.

Williams's company is asking for a declaration that the city has "exceeded its legislative authority by making it a condition to the issuance of a development permit that" his company "relinquish its right to have legal disputes adjudicated." 

In the application, Williams alleged the city acted in bad faith when it refused to provide proper information to requests under the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Wants council to decide development agreements

Williams also asked a judge to order that city council make decisions on the granting of Galway development agreements.

He is arguing city staff is making those decisions — something his application said is contrary to the legislation that governs city council.

Danny Breen was elected mayor of St. John's in September. (Mark Quinn/ CBC)

On Friday, the City of St. John's issued a news release saying it was served an application regarding the Galway Development.

The release said the lawyers hired by the city will file a detailed defence to the allegations in court.

About the Author

Mark Quinn

CBC News

Mark Quinn is a videojournalist with CBC's bureau in St. John's.