St. Marys Legal Fees Fuel Debate; Councilman Says Costs Can Be Reduced with Careful Planning

By Jackson, Gordon | The Florida Times Union, September 19, 2010 | Go to article overview

St. Marys Legal Fees Fuel Debate; Councilman Says Costs Can Be Reduced with Careful Planning


Jackson, Gordon, The Florida Times Union


Byline: GORDON JACKSON

ST. MARYS - The cost of controversy is expensive for St. Marys taxpayers.

Since Jan. 1, the city has paid $72,096.82 in legal fees, records show. Neighboring Kingsland, which has nearly the same number of residents, has paid $6,767.75.

Councilman Sidney Howell blames the costs on self-imposed problems created by two opposing factions on the City Council. Howell and Greg Bird have disagreed with council members Deborah Hase, Chuck Trader, John Morrissey and Keith Post on issues that have required legal opinions by former city attorney Alex Atwood, who resigned this year, and his replacement Gary Moore.

"These legal fees are out of control," Howell said. "It's because of a dysfunctional council."

Howell cited disagreements about relocating the municipal airport, firing tourism director Janet Brinko and buying a waterfront tract in June without public input for contributing to the costs. And legal fees should continue to mount because rights of way still must be acquired in the Gaines Davis subdivision for the installation of water lines. Residents there have waited more than a decade for city water.

Morrissey said legal opinions for proposed majority elections and negotiating to restructure a bond agreement with a developer trying to buy the Cumberland Harbour residential community also resulted in some of the costs.

"To understand it better, you have to look at the bills," he said. "We've had quite a bit of activity."

Bird said he believes council members could reduce legal fees with more effort of their own.

"We've got a city charter and an elected officials' handbook to guide our actions," he said. "We're a member of the Georgia Municipal Association and we're already paying for their services."

Bird questioned how Kingsland, a city with a comparable population, can hold its legal fees to a fraction of St. Marys' cost.

Kingsland City Manager Gwen Mungin said legal fees are low because, unlike in St. Marys, the city attorney does not attend most council meetings. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

St. Marys Legal Fees Fuel Debate; Councilman Says Costs Can Be Reduced with Careful Planning
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.