Vancouver USA port asks court to force Alcoa land deal
The Washington state Port of Vancouver has asked a judge to force Alcoa Inc. to arbitration, as the port seeks to complete the purchase of a Vancouver Lake lowlands parcel owned by the aluminum producer.
The port's purchase of the 107-acre parcel was to close March 31, but Pittsburgh-based Alcoa halted the $23.7 million deal after the Washington Department of Ecology rejected an Alcoa mitigation plan for the property. According to a petition filed by port officials Friday in Clark County Superior Court, the WDE rejected an Alcoa plan to clean up groundwater contamination on the parcel and recommended another solution, which port officials estimate could cost Alcoa tens of millions of dollars.
The port, concerned that Alcoa may attempt to pass the additional costs on to the port, is seeking mediation under a clause in the original deal.
Alcoa contends the conditions of the special clause forcing mediation have not been met.
The court has scheduled a hearing on the port filing for May 2.