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Private Relief Bill

James P. Purvis

James P. "Pat " Purvis was the general contractor  who built the U.S. pavilions for the 1962 Seattle World's Fair. To ensure that these buildings would be finished on time thereby assuring that the fair would open on time Purvis used his own funds to pay for the GSA's many "change work" orders. However, the government stubbornly refused to fully reimburse Purvis, and he was forced to seek restitution through the courts.

What ensued was a 17-year battle that was described by one judge as a sad example of the phrase "justice delayed is justice denied." When Purvis finally prevailed, the Claims Court was legally unable to provide any adjustment in the award to account for inflation. As a result, Purvis' attorneys turned to Congress for private relief.

Course of Action
Working with Purvis' legal team, devised and executed a lobbying strategy that resulted in reference of the Purvis private relief bill to the Claims Court.
Following a favorable report from the Claims Court, shepherded the bill through House and Senate Judiciary Committees and both chambers.
In a private White House ceremony on April 27, 1988, President Ronald Reagan signed the Purvis private relief bill into law (Private Law 100-9).
Pat Purvis' 25 year quest for justice was successfully concluded.

The $700,000 paid to Purvis was (at that time) the largest sum ever paid to a single individual through the private relief process.

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   2008 Fred H. Hutchison. All Rights Reserved.

Edited on: May 19, 2006