STATE GOP: COUNTY LEGAL BILLS
Posted: Oct. 22, 2002
WILMINGTON -- Republican
Party Chairman Everett Moore called on New Castle County Council to
stop allowing taxpayer money to be used for illegitimate legal fees.
“It has come to my attention that
this government has now spent more than $116,000 on private
attorneys so far this year – and unless someone takes action, we
could see hundreds of thousands of more dollars illegally taken from
the taxpayers and handed to out-of-state trial lawyers,” Chairman
“The amount of money this
administration has wasted is staggering,” Chairman Moore said. “By
my estimate, the County could have hired three new police officers
for the amount they have spent in legal fees in an attempt to cover
up wrongdoings and questionable actions.”
In January, money was
transferred to the County’s General Insurance program to pay $91,000
to Richard Wier, an attorney representing a former County employee.
Months later, the County
issued two checks to Kirkland and Ellis – a Washington, D.C.-based
law firm – for a total of $25,368.37. The invoices referenced
“While the County has not
released specific information about the reason behind the $25,000
legal bill, I find it interesting that the County would hire the
same attorney who successfully sued the News Journal’s parent
company, Gannett, to the tune of $10 million,” Chairman Moore said.
“I know if I wanted to get the media to leave me alone, I’d want to
have an attorney with that kind of reputation working for me –
especially if I could get the taxpayers to pick up the $25,000
Chairman Moore said New
Castle County taxpayers may now have to pay three Washington-based
lawyers an estimated $700 an hour – in violation of County Code – if
no one is willing to enforce the law.
“Tom Gordon chose the
husband and wife team of Joseph diGenova and Victoria Toensing,
whose web site proudly states the firm has particular expertise in
high-profile, media-driven matters requiring special legal and press
skills and that it represents individuals in such criminal matters
as public corruption and ethics,” Chairman Moore said.
Moore said the idea of
potentially sending $28,000 a week of taxpayer money to Washington
lawyers should outrage the people of New Castle County.
“I call on the members of
County Council to refuse payment to these Washington-based
lawyers,’” Chairman Moore said.
“If County Council is
unwilling to meet their obligation to the public, then the
Republican Party will have no choice but to seek Court intervention
on behalf of the hard-working men and women of this County,” he
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