Monson No. 3 steam engine. Submitted photo

FARMINGTON — Representatives of the Sandy River & Rangeley Lakes Railroad and a nonprofit Portland railroad company and museum have settled a lawsuit, according to attorneys for both parties.

The nonprofit Sandy River railroad in Phillips filed a lawsuit in Franklin County Superior Court last year against Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Co. & Museum in Portland.

Sandy River wanted compensation for its $144,000 investment and what it claimed was wrongful termination of a 15-year agreement. It involved restoration of a Monson No. 3 steam engine owned by Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Co. & Museum, according to the lawsuit.

The Portland company claimed Sandy River railroad was negligent in its maintenance of the steam engine and that gave it the right to take immediate possession of the engine and terminate the agreement.

The first part of the agreement was that the Sandy River railroad would act as general contractor to restore Engine No. 3, subcontracting part of the work but using unpaid volunteers for much of the work. Under the terms of the agreement, the Phillips museum would fund $35,000 of the restoration costs, according to the suit.

The second part was a lease agreement stipulating that after the restoration, Sandy River railroad would have the right to operate Engine No. 3 in Phillips for specific times during the summer and fall of each year for 15 years without paying further rent.

The case was anticipated to go to trial in April or May. However, but the lawsuit was dismissed permanently in late January.

“The parties reached an agreement and settled their differences, Ronald Cullenberg of Cullenberg Law offices, the attorney for Sandy River, wrote in an email. “I am sorry but I am not authorized to provide further details.”

Attorney David Goldman of Norman, Hanson & DeTroy in Portland, who represents the Portland company and museum, agreed with Cullenberg’s statement.


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