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HAMMOND | A dispute over a water filtration system installed at East Chicago's new waterworks may be settled out of court.

Two separate cases, one in U.S. District Court and another in Lake Superior Court, have been filed. Both parties are requesting the cases be delayed so the matter can be settled out of court, said Patrick Miller, of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP, representing East Chicago. Lake Superior Court has not yet approved a delay, he said.

Miller declined further comment on the matter, citing pending litigation.

East Chicago hired Siemens Industry Inc. to install a membrane filtration system in the plant, 3455 Pennsylvania Ave. The city contends in court documents that the company's filtration system failed to meet a contractual requirement of 17.3 million gallons a day.

According to Siemens' complaint in federal court, the filter required by city engineers would not meet the city's contract requirements and "no conventional strainer is so capable within the other performance requirements of the contract."

The company wants the city to complete its final payment of $462,822 for the project.

City officials in 2008 decided to build the new facility on 7 acres along Block Avenue and a new pumping station, water intake and storage tank for a total cost of $52 million.

The facility had been scheduled to begin operations in November 2011, but its opening was delayed because of problems with the filtration system, city officials have said.

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