Attorneys in TVA ash spill case return to court

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Attorneys for the Tennessee Valley Authority and property owners who are suing the utility are back to court after agreeing to call off a second trial on TVA's liability for its December 2008 coal ash spill.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Varlan has signed off on the attorneys' agreement that avoids a second bench trial that was to start Tuesday. The judge is instead meeting with attorneys who have until Jan. 12 to file post-trial briefs.

Their agreement stipulates that the judge use evidence from the first trial that ended last month in deciding whether TVA was negligent and is liable for damages.

If TVA is found liable, damage amounts will be considered later.

TVA disagrees with plaintiff attorneys who say the utility neglected warnings about problems at its Kingston Plant.

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