Monday, May 19, 2008


I’m sorry for the late post - but old people sleep in sometimes. I hate when the people are cheated. The people are being cheated on the billing related to the defense of the city commissioners who were taking unauthorized benefits.

The total time spent on the defense should have been no more than 10 hours. At a reasonable rate of $250.00 an hour - that would be $2,500.00 - not $40,000.00 plus. How can I be so certain of the billing? Reality -

The issue was simple - the charter either provided for or did not provide for benefits. This means defense counsel should have responded to the lawsuit with an immediate summary judgment arguing that as a matter of law the commissioners are entitled to the benefits. A Motion for Summary Judgment is nothing more than the defense saying the commissioners are entitled to the benefits and why. The motion is supported first and foremost by the plain language in the charter, and secondly by the case law. This would have been no more than 5 hours - me 2 ½ hours.

The same goes for counsel for the plaintiffs. He should have immediately moved for summary judgment on the plain language of the charter and attendant case law. Anything else would have been abusive of the process with full knowledge it would needlessly impose expenses on the taxpayers. Again, this would have been no more than 5 hours - me 2 ½ hours.

It is very simple people -

Comes now, your defendants and would show unto this honorable court they are entitled to summary judgment as a matter of law, and for good authority would show unto this court as follows:

Your plaintiffs urge before this court that as a matter of law your defendants are not entitled to the following benefits being received as city commissioners - (list benefits) Your defendants would show that Article XXX section XXX subsection XXX provides as follows: (See attached as exhibit 1 an authenticated copied of the Brownsville City Charter as provided for by the Rules of Evidence) Further, when faced with a similar question the XXX Court of Appeals or Texas Supreme Court has found XXXX "XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX" CITATION.

Based on the foregoing, your defendants are entitled to summary judgment as a matter of law.
The above is the basic outline of the motion for summary judgement which requires some fill in the blank. It took an entire 5 minutes. You add in two hours of research and review of the City Charter - which would be a lot and an additional 25 minutes to finish the typing, and you are at 2 ½ hours. Remember I am giving them 10 hours.

So what happened? Either the defense needlessly sent discovery on the plaintiffs for the sole purpose of padding his bill, or the plaintiffs needlessly sent discovery on the defendants to go on a political fishing expedition. As to the latter, it would seem to me they would have tried to discover how much in benefits were given to each commissioner during the period of illegal payments.

So you say, isn’t that important? Well yes - but important does not make it discoverable during the lawsuit. The issue was, were they entitled to the benefits? Whether they were paid one dollar or one billion dollars the answer would be the same - yes or no. The sole purpose of this additional discovery would have been to use the information for political ends. It would have been for a fishing expedition, which is not permissible.

If the latter happened, then the defense should have immediately moved for a protective order. The information simply was not germane to the issue - entitled or not entitled to the benefits.

If the latter did not happen, then we have a major problem. Nothing else could have possibly justified the billing for the defense. It would certainly not help these city commissioners if they had endless BS meetings with defense counsel having their egos stroked. No matter how you look at it, there is no ethical or legal basis for the defense bill in this case.

Finally, why should the taxpayers pay for the defense of the city commissioners who were stealing from the people? Their actions were not part of their official duties. Unless there is something in the city charter which mandates the taxpayers pay to defend city commissioners stealing benefits from the people, the city commissioners who were stealing the benefits should be held accountable to pay all of the attorneys fees as incident to the defense. When VP Cheney’s employee Libby got caught breaking the law, who paid for his defense? Libby, not the taxpayers.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mr. BWC,


Wow, you actually praised a money grubbing Republican while simultaneously vilifying known local Democrats!