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Articles

Judge issues tentative ruling in Playhouse trial

EDITOR'S NOTE: THIS ARTICLE WAS UPDATED EXTENSIVELY AT 1:40 P.M. JULY 19
Andra Belknap, Ojai Valley News reporter
Golden State Water Company (GSWC) will be ordered to compensate Khaled Al-Awar approximately $1.9 million to repair the Ojai Playhouse building, according to a tentative ruling issued July 19 by Ventura County Superior Court Judge Vincent O'Neill.
The news came one day before the three-year anniversary of the water main break that led to city officials red-tagging the building at 145 E. Ojai Ave.
During a July 14 court hearing, O'Neill said GSWC should pay the plaintiffs $409,004.44 in lost profits and $400,000 in annoyance and discomfort damages. 
O'Neill has tentatively ruled that GSWC pay the plaintiffs $2,662,168.44 in addition to the $850,000 GSWC’s primary insurance company has already paid. Attorney Brett Templeman, who also represents the Al-Awars, said the $850,000 does not include the water-damage remediation completed immediately after the break.
GSWC attorney Carlos Cabral argued the Al-Awars should be awarded a lesser amounts in damages.
What greater compensation than a brand new theater? Cabral asked.

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