The Town of Huntsville is appealing a court decision after it received a slap on the wrist for selling a former tenant’s piece of equipment without researching a best price. Blackbird Boats had a lease with the Town at 215 Main Street Eastin 2005 which came to an end in 2007. Court documents show the company’s former controllers Hunter-Rutland Inc.sued Huntsville for selling a computer controlled cutting machine they believed was still theirs. According to the lease agreement, any items left in the Town’s building after lease termination technically belongs to the landlord, but the owners’ claim they were given the impression Huntsville was only going to hold the machine until full payment on the debt was received. On the flip side, Town officials believed the owners abandoned the machine and that they were in the right to sell it. The machine was sold for $6,500 with the money going towards the Huntsville Mayor’s Golf Tournament Charity Fundraiser.

Court documents show the judge believed the machine was the Town’s property, but he also said the Town did not do the proper research to get the best price for it, nor did they put the profits towards the debt Blackbird Boats still owed the Town. The owners claimed punitive damages, but the judge ruled against it. The judge said the owners and the Town each had to find an expert to properly appraise the machine. The experts were then to meet and agree upon a value. The Town would have then had to pay whatever the difference was from the $6,500 the Town already received for the machine. That payment was to have gone towards the debt owed by Blackbirds. We’ll have more on the appeal decision when it comes down in the coming months.