Case No. 399-02649, Jointly Administered.United States Bankruptcy Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville Division.
May 20, 2004
Paul G. Jennings, Phillip G. Young, Jr. BASS, BERRY SIMS PLC, Nashville, TN, and George Panagakis, Esq. Patrick J. Nash, Jr., Esq. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher Flom (Illinois), Chicago, IL, Attorneys for Reorganized Debtors.
ORDER MODIFYING OMNIBUS PROCEDURES ORDER WITH REGARD TO DISCOVERY PROCEDURES IN CERTAIN ADVERSARY PROCEEDINGS AND GRANTING RELATED RELIEF
GEORGE PAINE, Chief Judge, Bankruptcy
Upon the motion dated April 28, 2004 (the “Motion”), wherein Service Merchandise Company, Inc. (“Service Merchandise”) and 31 of its affiliates (the “Affiliate Debtors”), (Service Merchandise and the Affiliate Debtors collectively, the “Reorganized Debtors”) requested that this Court enter an order, pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 105, modifying previously established discovery procedures as they apply to certain adversary proceedings; and all defendants in those adversary proceedings having notice of the relief sought by the Motion; and upon the entire record in these cases; and good and sufficient cause appearing therefore,
THE COURT THEREFORE FINDS, DECREES AND CONCLUDES:
A. The Court has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 157 and 1334. Venue is proper pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1408 and 1409. This is a core proceeding pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 157(b)(2).
B. On March 27, 1999 (the “Petition Date”), the Reorganized Debtors filed voluntary petitions in this Court for reorganization relief under chapter 11 of title 11 of the United States
Code, 11 U.S.C. §§ 101 et seq., as amended (the “Bankruptcy Code”). On March 29, 1999, this Court granted the Reorganized Debtors’ motion for an order consolidating a prior involuntary Chapter 11 petition filed only against Service Merchandise on March 15, 1999 (the “Involuntary Petition”), and for joint administration and procedural consolidation of these Chapter 11 cases.
C. On or about March 14, 2001, the Reorganized Debtors commenced 1,152 actions to recover money or property and to avoid certain preferential and otherwise avoidable transfers (the “Estate Causes of Action”). Pursuant to the Order (I) Establishing Omnibus Initial Filing and Pretrial Procedures for Adversary Proceedings Under 11 U.S.C. §§ 544, 545, 547, 548 or 553, and Certain Other Adversary Proceedings, (II) Granting Authority, Pursuant to F.R.B.P. 9019, to Compromise and Settle Such Actions, and (III) Granting Authority to Abandon Certain De Minimis Claims and Causes of Action (Docket No. 3565), (the “Omnibus Procedures Order”), the Estate Causes of Action are subject to omnibus pretrial procedures that include provisions governing discovery in the Estate Causes of Action.
D. Pursuant to the terms of the Omnibus Procedures Order, all discovery in the Estate Causes of Action has been stayed except that the Defendants are authorized to serve written discovery on the Reorganized Debtors, but the Reorganized Debtors cannot be compelled to provide responses at this time.
E. The relief requested in the Motion is in the best interests of the estate as it provides the most efficient means of finalizing resolutions to the the causes of action and/or preparing the actions for trial.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED:
1. The Omnibus Procedures Order is hereby amended to allow written discovery in the remaining unresolved Estate Causes of Action listed on Exhibit A (the “Actions”) to proceed as to any factual issues by the parties on the following basis:
(a) Written discovery requests in the form of interrogatories and requests for the production of documents regarding factual matters shall be allowed to proceed. All other discovery requests, including those regarding expert testimony, requests for depositions or requests for admissions shall continue to be stayed.
(b) Responses to written discovery allowed to proceed herein shall be due upon the later of (i) within ninety (90) days of service of such discovery or (ii) August 1, 2004.
2. All other terms and provisions of the Omnibus Procedures Order shall remain in full effect.
3. The Reorganized Debtors shall serve this Order on the parties listed in Exhibit A.
AP No. Defendant
301-0095 The Herald Company, Inc. d/b/a The Ann Arbor News
301-0096 Phoenix Newspapers, Inc. d/b/a Arizona Republic
301-0102 The Birmingham News Company
301-0105 McClure Newspapers, Inc. d/b/a Burlington Free Press
301-0113 Gannett Co Inc. d/b/a The Clarion Ledger
301-0117 Gannett Co. Inc. d/b/a The Courier-Journal
301-0123 Detroit News, Inc.
301-0130 Gannett Co Inc. d/b/a Fort Myers News Press
301-0134 Free Lance — Star Publishing Co. of Fredericksburg d/b/a Free Lance-Star
301-0138 Multimedia Publishing of North Carolina Inc. d/b/a Greenville News
301-0141 Gannett River States Publishing Co. d/b/a Hattisburg American
301-0142 Advance Publications, Inc. d/b/a The Huntsville Times
301-0158 The Mobile Press Register, Inc.
301-0160 The Advertiser Company d/b/a Montgomery Advertiser
301-0162 Collier County Publishing Company d/b/a Naples Daily News
301-0166 Gannett Co. Inc. d/b/a The News Journal
301-0168 Gannett River States Publishing Corporation d/b/a Springfield News-Leader
301-0176 The Patriot News Co.
301-0179 Guy Gannett Communications d/b/a Portland Press Herald
301-0180 Evening Post Publishing Company d/b/a The Post Courier
301-0201 Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. d/b/a The Tennesseean
301-0205 Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. d/b/a The Times
301-0207 The Times Picayune Publishing Corporation
301-0208 Times Publishing Company d/b/a St. Petersburg Times
301-0229 Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. d/b/a Binghampton Press Company
301-0235 Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc. d/b/a Courier Post
301-0238 Gannett Co Inc. d/b/a Democrat Chronicle
301-0241 El Paso Times, Inc.
301-0243 The Herald Company, Inc. d/b/a The Flint Journal
301-0250 Gannett Co., Inc. d/b/a Journal Courier
301-0253 Gannett Co. Inc. d/b/a Lansing State Journal
301-0261 Observer-Dispatch f/k/a Utica Observer-Dispatch
301-0269 Reno Newspapers Inc. d/b/a Reno Gazette Journal
301-0271 The Republican Company d/b/a The Union News/Sunday Republican
301-0278 The Herald Company Inc. d/b/a Syracuse Newspaper
301-0279 Thomson Newspapers, Inc. d/b/a Thomson Chesapeake, Inc.
301-0285 Gannett Satellite Information Network Inc. d/b/a USA Today
301-0362 Giovanni Jewelry
301-0382 International Gemmological Institute, Inc. d/b/a International Gemmological Information
301-0407 Richard Glatter, Inc. d/b/a Old Victoria
301-0553 Designer Supply
301-0625 Muskin Leisure Products, Inc.
301-0726 Dutailer, Inc.
301-0742 Jay Franco Sons, Inc.
301-0779 NCR Corporation
301-0796 Netmagic Systems, Inc.
301-0802 Software House International, Inc.
301-0815 International Gemmological Institute, Inc. d/b/a International Gemmological Information
301-0907 Madden’s, Inc.
301-0927 Robert Half International Inc. d/b/a Robert Half
301-1048 Vorhof-Duenke, Inc.
301-1124 Browning-Ferris Industries, Inc.
301-1137 Edwards Electrical Mechanical Inc.
301-1145 National Waste Service, Inc.
301-1158 Allied Waste Services d/b/a Olympic Waste Services
301-1179 Allied Waste Systems, Inc. d/b/a Vining Disposal Services
301-1206 American Finance Group, Inc.
301-1227 American Electric Power Company, Inc.
301-1231 American Electric Power Company f/k/a Central Power
301-1241 City Public Service of San Antonio, TX
301-1251 Gainesville Regional Utilities
301-1261 Johnson City Power Board
301-1263 Kansas Gas Electric Company
301-1278 Public Service Company of Oklahoma
301-1282 South Carolina Electric Gas Company
301-1284 Southwestern Electric Power Company
301-1291 West Texas Utilities Co.