Cahokia water district employees federal case over firings set for settlement conference

Amelia Flood May 4, 2011, 3:32am

A settlement conference is set May 17 in a federal case filed against the Commonfields Cahokia Water District and trustees Marilyn Stringfellow, Carolyn Touchette, Mike Millatti, and Erma Millard over the firings of several water district employees.

Plaintiffs Peggy Pierce, Isaac Turner, Marcus Luster, and Dennis Traiteur Jr. contend that their rights were violated when they were fired for what they allege was work they did on the campaigns of the defendants' opponents in an election.

The suit was filed in St. Clair County last year.

While the case was removed to federal court in March 2010, the St. Clair County case file did not reflect the removal until nearly a year later when attorney Julie Bruch sent a letter rectifying the file.

A January settlement conference in the federal case did not result in its end.

The most recent action in the federal case comes in the form of an April 26 order signed by federal Magistrate Judge Phillip Frazier.

It sets a settlement conference in the case for 9:15 a.m. May 17.

According to Frazier's order, the parties are to submit a settlement conference under seal to the judge that outlines their positions with respect to the suit and a potential settlement.

The statements are due May 10.

The order mandates that the individual parties as well as a representative from any involved insurance carrier with the ability to settle the case be present at the conference.

If any of the parties believe the conference will not be worthwhile, they are to inform the court of that within 72 hours of the conference.

Robert Sprague represents the plaintiffs.

Bruch represents the defendants. They were previously represented by Alvin Paulson, Brian
Kreisler and others.

The federal case is case number 3:10 - cv - 00182-PMF.

The St. Clair case was case number 10-L-61.

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