Tuesday, November 22, 2016

$10M lawyer fees for BdB defense

From the NY Times:

Inside New York City’s Law Department, the case is named Matter No. 2016-013018. It goes by an even more mysterious title in the city’s $10 million contract with outside criminal defense lawyers: John Doe Investigation.

But for New Yorkers, the matter is better known as the federal inquiry into Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, and his aides, one that is said to focus on whether they traded favorable government actions for political contributions.

Last week, the de Blasio administration quietly filed with the city’s comptroller its contract with a law firm, Debevoise & Plimpton, that has for months been acting as outside counsel for the mayor and his aides. The contract, obtained by The New York Times through a request under the state Freedom of Information Law, offers the most detailed look yet at the cost of defending actions that the mayor has insisted were appropriate and legal.

The Law Department, which arranged for the legal services through negotiation as opposed to a competitive bid process, described in concise terms its need for a firm “with expertise in criminal defense law to provide legal services in support of the John Doe Investigation and any related litigation.”

The department checked several boxes saying it required a contractor to “obtain special expertise” not available at the agency, “provide services not needed on a long-term basis,” “accomplish work within a limited amount of time” and “avoid a conflict of interest.” The city’s corporation counsel, who oversees the department, waived a requirement for a public hearing on the contract, the documents show, on the ground that a hearing could “disclose litigation strategy.”

The de Blasio administration, prompted by required budgetary reports, has in recent days offered a limited accounting of its spending on outside lawyers: $6.5 million through the end of the year for overlapping investigations of the mayor, said Eric F. Phillips, Mr. de Blasio’s spokesman.

That amount includes $400,000 for lawyers at Carter Ledyard & Milburn, who have helped defend the city in state and local inquiries — including one by the comptroller — into the sale in February of Rivington House, a former nursing home in Manhattan whose deed restricted use of the property to nonprofit residential health care. Mr. Phillips declined to comment on whether the firm continued to work for the city on that matter.

Mr. de Blasio, asked at a news conference on Friday about the costs, said: “We’ve been asked to provide information; we’ve been very, very cooperative, and as many times as the investigators want to talk to members of the administration, of course they will have that opportunity. But each time requires preparation and representation. That’s why.”

A Law Department spokesman declined to reply to a list of questions about the contract.


Anonymous said...

Soo happy to see our tax $ at work trying to protect this goniff.

Anonymous said...

Now that's progressive government for ya!

Anonymous said...

The progressives are not for progress. They are out for the good old mighty dollar from taxpayers.
We are going backwards. Not forward.

Anonymous said...

The progressives are not for progress. They are out for the good old mighty dollar from taxpayers.
We are going backwards. Not forward.

Gary W said...

What's in your wallet?

JQ LLC said...

This only confirms his guilt and his obnoxious arrogance, yet again.

Anonymous said...

As long as he gets his ass bitten off and sent to prison....I don't mind the money.
Big Bill will look good in orange. Yellow is Big Bird's color, so Der Wilhelm can't wear that...even though he looks like the big doofus Big Bird.
So long...suckah! You are a one term mayor.
You may, however, serve out your second term in jail!

Anonymous said...

Alas, Federal lockup is the only facility that can finally contain this subhuman's colossal arrogance, ego and unprecedented cowardice and hubris. What this dangerous shithead is doing to New York City right now is the greatest crimes against humanity of them all, and it's criminally unconscionable!

I have never seen my once great, proud, INCLUSIONARY, egalitarian, independent, self-reliant city look (and feel) so hostile, corrupt, dishonest, detached, disaffected and ravaged. In less than two years, this 'tall-and-stupid monster of great arrogance and cruelty has managed to do more damage to everyone languishing here than what was inflicted onto the entire decade of the 1970s——and, now with $10 Million in lawyer fees for this filthy crook without a conscience——it's only getting worse by the hour!

Anonymous said...

Billie has all his little trolls who do his dirty work and then will throw them under the bus or drop the ball on them. Do we feel sorry for them? No
and they get what they duly deserve.

Anonymous said...

Wow, our tax money is now going to protect the Mayor from all the investigations into how he's wasting our tax money.

We can't get this schmuck out of office fast enough.

Liman said...

That's a lot of escarole. To be fair (and it kills me to be fair to a guy who isn't fair), you really can't competitively bid legal services like this. These aren't slip and fall cases. The lowest bidder wouldn't have any idea how to handle something like this. I know, he may be the cause of his own troubles, but we have to presume he's innocent. And mayors get this kind of coverage from the City. Otherwise, no one would ever run.

But gee whiz, that's a LOT of money. And those are classic "white shoe" law firms. I'm sure they could have done at least a little better on the fees. He would have won some points if he said "I turned down the traditional firms because they were too much." But I'll bet he didn't even shop around.

faster340 said...

Hope he takes little Lincoln within..