The long-running feud among Bill Bob’s Texas owners will go to trial to if the two sides agree that is the only way to resolve their dispute.
Meanwhile, the group of majority owners has again ousted President Concho Minick from the club known as the World’s Largest Honky Tonk, according to sources close to the case. Minick has again been locked out of the club.
State District Judge Michael Wallach made good on comments he made during a recent hearing that a trial might be the only way to complexities that surround this case.
Wallach denied both sides requests for summary judgment and asked attorneys to submit requests by Nov. 17 for a trial date. In his letter to attorneys, he wrote that he believes that there are “issues of material fact which need to be resolved.”
Andy Sims of Harris, Finley & Bogle, now representing the minority group of owners led by the family of former Fort Worth City Councilman Steve Murrin, declined further comment, Marshall Searcy, of Kelly Hart & Hallman, attorney for the majority group of owners, was unavailable for comment on Friday.
Concho Minick’s role as president is one of the central issues in the dispute that has pitted relatives and long-time friends against one another. Minick is also a minority owner in Billy Bob’s.
The group of majority owners, led by Brad Hickman and his family, who own the largest share of stock in the nightclub, had locks on the building changed last spring to keep Minick out. The group took that action after Hickman tried to have Minick demoted and reassigned based on allegations of poor work performance.
Changing the locks led the minority owners group of Murrin and his family and Minick to file a lawsuit, which Philip Murrin, Steven Murrin’s son, said was a last resort to resolve the dispute.
Dallas Mavericks General Manager Donnie Nelson, also a minority owner, has since joined the suit, aligned with the Murrins and Minick.
The legal issue of the dispute pivots on two documents: a company agreement and a certificate of organization. Majority owners claim the certificate of organization trumps the company agreement and allows for a simple system of decision-making based on majority rule, attorneys argued in a series of court hearings.
Minority owners’ position is that the company agreement has been the organization’s guiding document since it was written. It requires unanimous agreement on major decisions such as terminating the company’s top executive or bringing a lawsuit.
Wallach’s decisions on earlier motions note that both sides acknowledge the company agreement and have it used it to their advantage.
Minority owners claimed in court documents and testimony that a majority-rule scenario deprives them of their ownership rights in important decisions. They claimed the unanimous-consent rule in the company agreement was the only way to ensure fairness for all owners.