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Adams County awarded $33.5 million in noise complaint lawsuit against Denver International Airport

Posted at 4:57 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-23 09:36:36-04

ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. — Denver International Airport was ordered Friday to pay Adams County $33.5 million for failing to properly control, monitor and report the noise from its operations.

The ruling stems from a noise complaint lawsuit filed against the airport last fall in Jefferson County District Court.

Several communities, including Adams County, accused DIA of violating an agreement the airport has with the neighboring counties, which was agreed to before DIA opened in 1995.

The intergovernmental agreement (IGA) requires DIA to report noise data to the parties in the agreement, but Adams County says the airport has been underreporting the data for years.

The IGA was put in place in exchange for Denver to annex land within Adams County to build the new airport.

The ruling, handed down Friday from Judge Christie Bachmeyer, finds DIA was in violation of the IGA during the years of 2014, 2015, and 2016.

“We’re grateful to the Jefferson County judge for taking the necessary time to evaluate this complex case and return a judgment that delivers justice to Adams County,” said Adams County Board Chair Emma Pinter in a statement. “This is an agreement between Denver and Adams County and we both have an obligation to uphold this agreement.”

DIA has denied the noise complaints and said Monday, "We are disappointed in this decision and are considering next steps."