TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — After the Florida Senate spent $5 million on a website that it scrapped, it is now spending up to $200,000 more in a legal battle to avoid further payments to the site’s creator.

The Tallahassee-based contractor sued the Republican-controlled Senate earlier this year to recover a final $500,000 payment for the website, which was supposed to help people understand the state budget but was never made public. The contract was signed in 2011 under a previous Senate president.

Spider Data Services asked the Senate in early 2013 for the last installment, but the Senate has refused to pay.

Documents posted by the Senate online show it has agreed to pay up to $200,000 to fight the lawsuit. It also has argued in court filings that the website never worked as planned.