Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

Legal Costs Pass Million-Dollar Mark

Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

Legal Costs Pass Million-Dollar Mark

Article excerpt

TWEED shire Council's annual legal bill has soared through the one-million-dollar barrier for the first time ever - more than double what it was five years ago.

Two major court cases pushed the legal costs towards the sky - a fight with developer Metricon which wanted to build a large shopping centre with a major supermarket in Seabreeze estate at Pottsville, and a prolonged battle with Tweed accountant Terry Sharples over rates rises.

The council won both cases but the Seabreeze battle alone cost the council $473,985 and it appears to have little prospect of recovering any costs.

The council's corporate services director Troy Green said yesterday the council had "explored avenues for costs", but in such an appeal being awarded costs was "very, very rare".

In the Terry Sharples case, the court ordered Mr Sharples to pay the council one third of its costs amounting to $280,776.

But Mr Green said Mr Sharples had "not to date paid any of the costs" as he had lodged an appeal against the costs order. …

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