BRADENTON, Fla. — The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over Jefferson County, Ala.'s Chapter 9 case tossed out billions in claims sought in two major suits.

Judge Thomas Bennett in a ruling Oct. 17 agreed with the county's objections to a $1.63 billion claim filed by attorney Calvin Grigsby representing local elected officials and other ratepayers on the county's sewer system. The ratepayers are also involved in a separate "adversarial" suit in the bankruptcy case contending that it was illegal for the county to issue most of the sewer system warrants, and to use swaps.

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