Town buys out Budges

By on September 3, 2015

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Planet JH has learned of a partial settlement with homeowners on Budge Drive as a step toward remediation of the landslide that caused the permanent closure of one retail store and condemned other private residences.

To ward off any potential litigation, Town of Jackson officials will pay $250,000 to Sara and Jeremy Budge at 1025 Budge Drive, and Allen and Sharlene Budge at 1040 Budge Drive. In return, those parties, as well as the Walgreen Co. have agreed not to pursue legal action or make any claims for the April 2014 slide that damaged their properties.

“Our main goal has been and continues to be remediating the slide to avoid any future movement of the hillside and the resulting impacts to residents and the community,” Mayor Sara Flitner stated in a prepared release. “This agreement is an important step in moving forward with the identified remediation. On behalf of the Jackson Town Council I would like to thank Sara, Jeremy, Allen, and Sharlene Budge, and Walgreens for their continued efforts to work with us to accomplish this collective resolution for the health, safety and welfare of the public.”

For the quarter-million dollar payout, the town would become the new owner of the two properties. It is not immediately clear with the town intends to do with the properties other than to use gravel and other natural materials from the land to help buttress the hillside.

The Local Governmental Liability Pool (LGLP) and Walgreens have agreed to contribute additional funds in order to avoid litigation. A separate settlement agreement and release of claims was executed by those parties. It includes “no fault” provisions and a “release from liability” clause that come with a promise of no future litigation.

Efforts continue to reach agreements with the Hillside Partners – an association of Bencor Inc. (Walgreens) and homeowners on Budge Drive – that will allow the town to work on stabilizing the hill. The work is expected to cost about $10 million.


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