Fox News’ late-night Friday segment, “Night Court,” where two guest lawyers debate a selected case of pop-culture interest, featured a suit filed by the city of Nashville against the owner of a hot tub party vehicle company. Lawyers Kelly Hyman and Bryan Rotella were on hand to offer their legal expertise on the matter.
The city argues that Guy Williams, the owner of Music City Party Tub is operating a mobile public swimming pool without a permit. But, Williams contends that his hot tub doesn’t meet the requirements necessary for a permit in the city. Plus, he argues as a small business owner, the cost of defending himself would put him out of business.
The Metropolitan Government of Nashville laid out a list of things that Williams needed to change in order to continue operating, essentially calling for a complete re-engineering of the festive conveyance.
“Hugh Atkins, MPHD Environmental Health Director explained to Mr. Williams that the tub on the vehicle met the definition of a public pool and he needed a permit to operate,” the lawsuit stated, according to Fox News.
(Video: Fox News)
Williams, for his part, changed nothing about the vehicle, arguing that he simply can’t afford to do it. In addition, he argued that his hot tub on wheels is not a public pool.
Class action attorney Hyman reiterated what Williams said, in that the hot tub is simply not a pool, it’s mobile as well, therefore no permit should be required.
According to the city’s statement in the suit, “Mr Williams stated that he was exempt. He claimed that his tub’s capacity was 300 gallons and that according to state law, a pool must have a minimum of 350 gallons to be considered a public pool … There is no such exemption. Rather, state law requires the hot tub that Mr. Williams is operating as Music City Party Tub to be permitted.”
GenCo attorney Rotella offered his opinion, saying that Williams was simply wrong, though he didn’t cite any Tennessee statute. Instead, he raised the point that Williams’ company has been cited 27 times for “issues.” He did not specify if those were health citations or structural and/or design issues.
He said that companies that own hot tubs get sued frequently.
“The water sits, it doesn’t circulate, bacteria grows, and we’ve actually had things where people have gotten Legionnaires’ disease.”
“You hit the jets on these things and it turns literally into a sprinkler of bacteria,” he added.
He believes the court will no doubt enter an injunction against the company, halting its operation at least for now.
Williams argues that, “Airbnb’s and overnight vacation rentals have hot tubs/spas without a ‘permit’ or requirements to rebuild with pool construction specs like hotels.”
“This has nothing to do with health or cleanliness, which we take care of but is another story,” he stated.
Hyman backed up Williams’ point again, stating that it’s simply a hot tub and not a pool.
Rotella said the focus should be on the 27 violations that have allegedly been issued against the company.
Williams reportedly said he simply wants his day in court.
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