At the May 3, 2022, City Council meeting, the City Council voted 4-2 to end the litigation against me but to authorize payment of $300,000 to the greedy and unethical southern California attorney who promoted the litigation and profited from it at the rate of $495/hour. Voting in favor were Jimenez, McLaughlin, Martinez and Johnson, Butt and Bates opposed, and Willis was absent.
In addition to $300,000 for services rendered, the law firm, Meyers Nave, had requested an additional $150,000 to keep the litigation going, but the Interim City Attorney wrote, “The costs here have been way beyond expectation and spending the requested $150,000 on this matter by our counsel, Meyers Nave … is completely unwarranted.”
In the staff report for the item, Interim City Attorney Dave Aleshire wrote, “Accordingly, I recommend that the City Council instruct us to dismiss and abandon these legal proceedings and authorize the Vice Mayor to execute the 2nd Amendment.”
City Council members who supported the litigation have tried to characterize it as a noble cause to ensure compliance with the law and show that there are consequences for flouting the city attorney’s orders. Council member Jimenez pulled out her race card and accused me of exercising “white privilege.”
At the end of the day, however, the City Council majority’s actions to first pursue a $100,000 dead-end investigation and then a $300,000 lawsuit were simply mean spirted and a misuse of public funds, showing just how naïve, misguided and irresponsible they are. What they did was simply personal and vindictive and way below what we should expect from our elected representatives.
The $400,000 they spent could have been used to fill 40,000 potholes, resurface one mile of streets, install 1,000 speed bumps or hire two full-time police officers for a year. Instead, the RPA City Council members totally wasted it with nothing to show for it.
And Councilmember Martinez wants to be your next mayor. Think about it.