Hicks Construction still owed $439,484 for controversial Windermere project
By Bob Baysinger
October 21, 2003
CAMDENTON – Hicks Construction Co., Niangua, has returned to court in Camden County, asking a circuit court judge for a default judgment against Windermere Baptist Conference Center.
Richard Hicks, owner, said his firm still has received no pay for work done on the $19 million Windermere expansion project although Windermere officials announced last August that all debts had been paid with interest.
"It has been 46 days since the Springfield newspaper reported that all contractors had been paid for work performed at the Windermere Spring Valley Project," Hicks said. "I cannot speak on behalf of any other contractor, but Hicks Construction is still owed $439,484."
The Camden County Circuit Court judge refused to award the default judgment, but he did give the defendants – Windermere and Construction Resources, LLC – a 20-day extension to file a response.
"We were very disappointed after waiting a year to be paid," Hicks said. "We were sure hoping to get a default judgment so we could proceed with the unfortunate next step."
He did not elaborate what he meant by "unfortunate next step."
The Pathway attempted to contact Rick Quint of Walton Construction, Windermere project’s general contractor. Quint did not return calls to The Pathway but left a message with a secretary that he would have "no comment."
A spokesman for one other Windermere subcontractor, Ozark Ready-Mix, said his comapny had been paid in full for work done the Windermere site.
Windermere is one of five Missouri Baptist agencies that broke away from the Convention by changing its charter without approval of the MBC. After leaving the MBC family, Windermere’s board approved the controversial multi-million dollar expansion project and linked with Construction Resources to manage the job. Construction Resources is a subsidiary of Springfield-based Resource Development Incorporated (RDI). Former MBC Executive Director Jim Hill is RDI’s president and chief executive officer. Construction Resources is headed by Jerry Hill, brother of Jim.
Work was started on the Wilderness Creek Project without securing financing. Walton Construction and other subcontractors filed mechanic’s liens in Camden County Circuit Court when contractors received no pay for work completed.
Unpaid bills totaled more than $3.5 million when Windermere secured financing from Allegiant Bank of St. Louis. The $18.75 million loan is secured by the Windermere property.