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City of Springfield Settles Lawsuit With AT&T Missouri

The City of Springfield and AT&T Missouri have reached an out-of-court settlement to end a lawsuit over a dispute about the city's business license gross-receipts tax. KSMU's Jennifer Moore reports.

Under the settlement agreement signed Tuesday, AT&T Missouri will pay the City of Springfield about $7.4 million dollars for back taxes. The telephone company will also pay the city’s external attorney fees.

Nancy Yendes is the assistant attorney for the City of Springfield.

“What this means for the city of Springfield going forward is that the City Council has indicated that they will place that settlement in the Police-Fire Pension Fund, in accordance with the promise that they made to the voters. And then AT&T landline company will be paying a little more in taxes every quarter, because they have agreed to pay on some revenue streams that they were not paying on before,” she said.

Yendes said the two parties had been trying to reach a settlement for a couple of months.

“We had a trial setting for the first week in February in front of Judge Nannette Lowry in the Western District federal court that sits in Jefferson City. So we did meet before Christmas to talk settlement, and we were just talking about the language,” she said.

The city filed a lawsuit in 2004 against AT&T landline and four wireless companies over the issue of how they were paying the city’s gross receipts telephone license tax. Before this week, the part of that litigation dealing with wireless telephone companies had been resolved, but the AT&T landline issues were still pending.

For KSMU News, I'm Jennifer Moore.