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City of Neosho Reaches Settlement With Veterans Group - KOAM TV 7

City of Neosho Reaches Settlement With Veterans Group

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NEOSHO, MISSOURI -

A lawsuit comes to an end with a veterans group accepting a settlement from the City of Neosho.  That lawsuit was filed in 2013, and centered around the Neosho American Legion alleging the City backed out of a contract.

The City had its own view.

American Legion members in Neosho call this a step in the right direction.

"I know it's a good deal because people on both sides aren't completely happy.  But then they are happy," says William Doubek, a member of Neosho's American Legion.

Legion officials said a building near the City's police station was legally theirs, according to a 2004 agreement with the City.  According to the City, however, the building would be handed over once the police department no longer needed it for offsite storage.

"Well, as it went, it was impossible for us to do that," says Neosho Mayor Ben Baker.  "We had to use that building and there were things we had to put in there."

Time was passing, the Legion still didn't have the building, and veterans felt the City wasn't properly maintaining the building in the first place.  

"I love this town, and I hated the animosity between the veterans and the City," says Doubek.

"It was a black eye on Neosho," says Baker.

The City has reached a settlement with the Legion for $55,000.  But Legion members are still without an official place to meet.

"Here's the money.  Take it and try to do what you can with that," says Baker.

"We believe there are people out there who will finance a post home," says Doubek.

The City of Neosho issued a statement that reads:

"The City of Neosho and Clyde Burdick, Post 163 American Legion are pleased to announce a settlement of all issues involving a lawsuit filed in 2013. This settlement puts an end to a distraction that had plagued both sides and was utilized by outside organizations to create increased animosity during the settlement process. The City of Neosho and American Legion expressly acknowledge appreciation to the Neosho City Council and American Legion Command Staff for their willingness and desire to find a reasonable solution to this issue. Both sides further state that the relations between both parties have been entirely repaired and they have committed to continue working together for the benefit of our veterans and the citizens of Neosho"

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