Its raining, raining, raining here this morning…. (Grandpa Jones video below)
I trust that Gaylord Entertainment believes in effective government, and therefore willing, as I am, to pay taxes to make sure programs are well-funded. I hope that Gaylord is not one of those less-taxes, smaller government types that often can be found in corporate boardrooms.
I have my differences with business decisions that Gaylord has made over the years, and am doubtful that this one is any better. I can tell you that I felt real genuine anguish when the flood waters covered the Opry stage, and ruined so many music artifacts from the days when country music was indeed country music. But I am not at all certain that blame can be placed on the National Weather Service. I think Gaylord is looking for more cash, and hopes the federal government will ante up.
The owner of the Grand Ole Opry, the temple of American country music, sued the federal government Monday, alleging that damage from the Nashville flood of 2010 was the result of negligence on the part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Weather Service.
The spring 2010 flood of the Cumberland River resulted in 11 deaths in Nashville, affected 2,773 businesses and left an estimated $2 billion in private property damage, according to city government figures. The flood caused more than $250 million in damage to the Opry and related buildings.
Monday’s lawsuit is notable not only because one of its main plaintiffs, Gaylord Entertainment Co., is the owner of the landmark Opry and the nearby Opryland Hotel, but also because the plaintiffs will try to hold the government accountable using a strategy similar to one employed by a group of New Orleans residents who won a lawsuit against the Corps of Engineers over the floods that followed Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
In the Nashville case, plaintiffs argue that the flooding was caused by a botched handling of the Old Hickory Dam upriver. The lawsuit alleges that the federal dam was authorized by Congress not as a flood-control project, but as a hydroelectric power and navigation project. As a result, it argues, the government should not be immune from a lawsuit.
The suit also alleges that the government failed to issue a proper warning of the danger.