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City of Morris asking for RTA lawsuit to be heard in Grundy County

Published: Friday, May 23, 2014 12:06 p.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, May 23, 2014 12:09 p.m. CDT

MORRIS – The city of Morris has filed a motion regarding the Regional Transit Authority's case against it to have the case heard in Grundy County.

The motion to transfer the venue was filed earlier this week in Cook County, Morris City Attorney Scott Belt said Friday. As of Friday, the RTA had not yet answered the motion.

"The city denies the allegations alleged in RTA's complaint," Belt said.

In March, the Chicago Regional Transit Authority filed suit against Morris, and previously against Channahon, for controversial taxing strategies.

The RTA named Morris and Bell Fuels – a wholesale petroleum distribution company – as defendants in the lawsuit. The lawsuit claims Bell Fuels is unlawfully routing all purchases through a small office at 519 Franklin St. in Morris, even though the company is headquartered in Stickney, in Cook County.

The RTA claims in its lawsuit that Morris and Bell Fuels are diverting a “significant” amount of sales tax revenue from Cook County and, subsequently, the RTA.

Morris is requesting the case be heard in Grundy County since all the activity associated with Bell Fuels occurred in Grundy County and most of the witnesses for the case are located here, Belt said.

A message left Friday with the RTA was not immediately returned.

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