Scottsdale City Council approves $65K settlement to bicyclist hit on road

A bicyclist demanding payment from the city of Scottsdale several years after being hit by a motorist will be offered a $65,000 settlement.

The Scottsdale City Council approved a resolution at its Tuesday, Jan. 8 meeting to resolve pending litigation and have the city attorney draw up paperwork in which a judgment amount of $65,000 will be offered to bicyclist.

The cyclist, Robert Marcellus, has been seeking damages for several years since the city initially denied liability.

Mr. Marcellus was reportedly injured when a driver hit him from behind while biking on Rio Verde Road near 120th Street.

Although he received a settlement from the driver who hit him, he filed a lawsuit against the city alleging that it should have installed bike lanes or wider paved shoulders on that part of the road, according to the city staff report.

Despite the city denying liability, the report said parties recently attempted to settle the case through a mediator, but Mr. Marcellus allegedly refused to accept the offered amount the city presented.

The city then invoked Rule 68, Arizona Rules of Civil Procedure, which allows it to have a judgment entered for a certain sum.

The report details if the offeree does not accept the offer and fails to get a more favorable judgment, then the offeree must pay the successful party’s reasonable expert witness fees and double the taxable costs incurred after the offer.

If the offer is not accepted and if there is a possibility later to settle the case on terms no less favorable to the city than the offer of judgment, the city would want to proceed with the settlement.

Although the report noted that the $65,000 settlement is not unreasonable, according to city staff, funding is available through the Risk Management operating budget. The proposed payment may be included in the city’s primary property tax for the next year, the report said.

Independent Newsmedia News Services Specialist Delarita Ford can be reached by e-mail at dford@newszap.com.

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