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Elwood ordered to hand over documents

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014 12:36 p.m. CDT

CHICAGO — An Illinois Commerce Commission administrative law judge has ordered the Village of Elwood to hand over requested documents in the ongoing case over safety at the Walter Strawn Drive railroad crossing.

During an ICC status hearing Wednesday in Chicago, Judge Miguel Del Valle said CenterPoint Properties' requests for documents in the matter are “not too burdensome or onerous."

Valle then ordered Elwood to comply with the request by Sept. 15, when a discovery status hearing takes place.

Both sides Wednesday accused each other of delaying the case. To expedite the process, CenterPoint's attorney Michael Scotti agreed to withdraw his initial request for witness depositions — a request that attorneys for both Elwood and Union Pacific called unnecessary at this time.

David Schmidt, an attorney for Elwood, argued the document requests were CenterPoint's way of delaying an evidentiary hearing. The requests are taking attention away from the case itself, he said, and the solutions needed to increase public safety at the Walter Strawn Drive railroad crossing in Elwood.

Ongoing issues at the Route 53 and Walter Strawn Drive intersection have been the subject of recent hearings after the ICC – which governs the state’s railway system – decided earlier this year to reopen a 2001 case brought forward by Elwood.

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