JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. - A judge has ruled not to dismiss a lawsuit over the failed sale of the Bellefonte Nuclear Plant in Hollywood, Alabama. The Tennesee Valley Authority and Nuclear development appeared in federal court Monday. TVA asked the court to throw the case out.

The legal battle over Bellefonte continues.

"Unfortunately, the judge did not decide in our favor and we respect that," said Scott Fiedler, TVA spokesperson.

TVA attorneys asked a judge Monday to dismiss the lawsuit because closing on the sale would have been illegal.

"We followed the Atomic Energy Act that prevented us from transferring our licenses to an entity that did not have the permission of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission," said Fiedler.

It all comes down to red tape and permits.

TVA says the company needs permits before the sale could close but Nuclear Development doesn't see it that they. The company's attorneys say they don't need a permit until before construction starts - not before the sale.

The judge found that because of the strict and lengthy laws around the sale of a nuclear site, TVA's argument isn't is not crystal clear.

A TVA spokesperson says the company is ready to move forward with the case and despite the lawsuit - he made it clear the public utility would still like to sell the plant.

"TVA's focus is putting that property back into play for economic development of Jackson County, It has tremendous resources, it has water, it has rail, it could be used for light industrial, heavy industrial," said Fiedler.

The judge has ordered TVA to repsond to ND's complaint by May 29th.

WHNT News 19 reached out to Nuclear Development for comment and they did not respond to our request.