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Legal Costs

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NEWS
November 18, 1992 | By Daniel LeDuc, INQUIRER TRENTON BUREAU
The New Jersey Supreme Court yesterday extended the deadline for the legislature and Gov. Florio to come up with a way to pay lawyers who represent poor people accused of crimes. Since last summer, after the legislature made deep budget cuts, there has been no money to pay for lawyers in cases in which the Public Defender's Office is barred by law from representing defendants. The court had said that Nov. 13 would be the deadline for the Republican- led legislature and Florio, a Democrat, to agree on a way to come up with the $3 million needed for the lawyers, whose services must be provided under the federal and state constitutions.
NEWS
June 7, 1990 | By Kevin McKinney, Special to The Inquirer
Kennett Square Borough officials are starting to feel the squeeze. Legal costs of $231,500 to cover six lawsuits in the last 30 months, all involving Police Chief Albert J. McCarthy, has the borough caught in a severe financial crunch for the first time in at least a decade. The borough found itself in the hole by $127,000 at the end of 1989, according to Pam Adams of Barbacane, Thorton & Co., auditors for the borough. Borough Council President Kenneth Roberts, concerned about the town's financial status, Monday night asked borough manager Doug Marguriet to compile a report projecting the financial future of the municipality.
NEWS
April 8, 2012 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writer
Even as they slashed county services and held row officers to a tight fiscal line, Montgomery County's former commissioners obscured legal expenses for their offices, including $2.2 million in unbudgeted payments to outside law firms, a review of the last four years of county books shows. The money, spent between 2008 and 2011, included disbursements for county legal work done by lawyers who had contributed frequently to the commissioners' campaigns. Some of it also went to pay at least 13 part-time staff lawyers, whose salaries were added to other departments so as not to inflate the annual budget of the county's executive office, members of the former administration said.
NEWS
June 25, 1995 | By Natalie Pompilio, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
School board members spent their last school-year meetings nickel-and- diming every issue, from the size of a teacher's stipend to summer job funds. Among the reasons for the board's scrutiny of each expenditure? Legal fees more than double what was originally budgeted. On Tuesday, the board approved payment of slightly more than $12,000 in legal bills for April. Including the $25,600 the board has already spent on lawyers and the upcoming legal bills for May and June, the board could be looking at a $50,000 tab for the fiscal year that ends June 30. The 1994-95 budget provided $15,000 for such expenses.
NEWS
August 3, 2011
The Philadelphia Housing Authority says it will repay $150,000 worth of questionable legal expenses it billed to the federal government. That's good news for the federal treasury, but it's not much comfort to the impoverished Philadelphians the housing agency is supposed to help. To get square with the feds, the $150,000, along with another $69,435 of questionable billings for legal work, will be repaid from "other funds" at PHA. Those "other funds" are not going to come from the pockets of those responsible, such as ousted PHA director Carl Greene.
NEWS
August 13, 1994 | by Joseph R. Daughen, Daily News Staff Writer
Two alleged high-ranking members of the John Stanfa organized crime family say they are so broke they want the taxpayers to foot the bill for their legal expenses. In petitions filed in U.S. District Court, Frank Martines, the reputed underboss to Stanfa, and Salvatore "Shotsie" Sparacio, the capo who is said to have run mob gambling in the Trenton area, asked that they be treated as paupers. Martines, 41, of Yardley, Bucks County, was described in the petition as "unemployed" and without "income from any source.
NEWS
February 21, 1997 | By Douglas Herbert, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
A Delaware County jury has ordered the Fraternal Order of Police to pay $92,428 to a former Upper Darby police officer, finding that the organization acted improperly in refusing to cover his legal expenses in a high-profile criminal trial in 1991. Peter Rorke and four fellow former Upper Darby officers were convicted of civil-rights charges that May by a federal court jury. The case involved the beating, false arrest and prosecution of a local father and son in September 1988.
NEWS
April 1, 2004 | By Marcia Gelbart and Emilie Lounsberry INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
Philadelphia is poised to spend nearly $1.5 million this year on outside lawyers to help respond to a battery of grand-jury subpoenas and to represent city employees and officials in two federal investigations. "A substantial part of the amount requested is attributed to the ongoing investigations," City Solicitor Pedro A. Ramos said yesterday, referring to an investigation into alleged corruption in city government and a separate inquiry into legal work given by the city Pension Board to a politically active law firm.
NEWS
April 29, 2001 | By Wendy Ginsberg INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
Recently, Evesham's Township Council, township manager, solicitor and other officials sat in the dimly lit council chamber, airing their concerns about the forthcoming budget. It's a familiar scene in many townships: The hour is late, the numbers are crunching, and the officials are torn between a desire to go home and an obligation to finish the budget. "Last year was an anomaly," Township Manager Florence Ricci said to the council just as the figures for legal costs appeared on the screen behind her. "We spent over $300,000 in legal fees.
NEWS
January 14, 2001 | By Jan Hefler, INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
For 18 years, Robert Lees spent several nights a month at town hall reviewing building plans in this rural Pinelands community. There, huddled with other members of the Land Development Board, he weighed builders' proposals against the pleas of residents who preferred the quiet of vacant fields and bucolic blueberry farms. Like thousands of other volunteers who help to run local governments, Lees and his colleagues received no pay. "I love my town. I grew up here," he said. Two years ago, Lees' love of his town was severely tested when a decision he made put him on a collision course with local officials, invoked charges of conflict of interest, and resulted in an acrimonious lawsuit that could cost him thousands of dollars.
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NEWS
November 12, 2014 | By Chris Hepp, Inquirer Staff Writer
Five Democratic legislators and the cities of Philadelphia and Lancaster have filed suit to block a new state law that greatly expands the ability of gun advocates - including the National Rifle Association - to challenge local attempts to regulate firearms. The law, passed in late October, gives the NRA legal standing to bring suits against local municipalities that enact their own gun laws and to require those municipalities to bear all legal costs should they lose. As the result of the law, gun control advocates say, municipalities that attempt to place restrictions on guns could face prohibitively costly court fees should those laws be found legally wanting.
NEWS
November 4, 2014 | Inquirer Editorial Board
Under cover of night and in the final moments of the legislative session, lawmakers in Harrisburg robbed Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and other communities of a weapon in their fight against gun violence. The legislature approved a bill allowing the National Rifle Association and others to sue cities and towns over gun ordinances - and, even more outrageously, forcing local governments to cover their legal costs. The process was as questionable as the result. The provision was smuggled into an unrelated bill on metal theft, and at one point the Senate voted to bypass a good-government rule requiring it to end voting at 11 p.m. The law will hamper local efforts to deal with illegal guns in a state that does little to help cities beset by violence.
NEWS
October 6, 2014 | By Jeff Gelles, Inquirer Staff Writer
Is Albert Whitehead a compulsive critic seeking revenge against Sundance Vacations for an old slight, a man who deserves to be summoned repeatedly to Luzerne County for legal proceedings, have his e-mail records subpoenaed, and pay $12,991 toward Sundance's legal costs to shut him up - or go to jail if he can't? Or is Whitehead a selfless whistle-blower suffering because he can't afford to counter Sundance's lawyers - a man unfairly in the crosshairs of the Wilkes-Barre lodging-package marketer, which he says uses legal loopholes to lock unwitting customers into costly, long-term contracts?
BUSINESS
August 2, 2013 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. reported a net loss of $452 million in the second quarter of 2013 because of slightly lower revenue for the period but mostly because of legal bills amounting to $1.4 billion. Indirectly, part of the legal bill hits the books now because of June's Supreme Court ruling in an antitrust case, favoring the Federal Trade Commission and hurting drug companies that engaged in "reverse payments," or pay-to-delay deals. Teva said Thursday it had an "agreement in principle" to settle class-action lawsuits related to several such cases, involving the drug Provigil, used to treat excessive sleepiness, and would take a charge of $485 million against second-quarter earnings.
NEWS
June 27, 2013 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
Until a new council took office, Medford Township paid a law firm hourly fees for services that "appeared to be covered" by its monthly retainer, the state comptroller said in a report released Tuesday that warned local governments to carefully look for overbilling of legal costs. "Public officials need to scrutinize their legal bills as if they were paying for them out of their own pocket - otherwise taxpayers are going to get ripped off," A. Matthew Boxer said in a statement after issuing his 38-page report that criticized "excessive and improper" legal payments.
NEWS
March 27, 2013
Boris Berezovsky, 67, a self-exiled and outspoken former Russian oligarch who had a bitter falling out with Russian President Vladimir Putin, was found dead Saturday in southeast England. Thames Valley police said his death was being treated as unexplained. A mathematician-turned-Mercedes dealer, Mr. Berezovsky amassed his wealth during Russia's chaotic privatization of state assets in the early 1990s. In return for backing former Russian President Boris Yeltsin, he gained political clout and opportunities to buy state assets at knockdown prices.
NEWS
August 8, 2012 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
Citing the "serious nature of his conduct," a Philadelphia judge denied a request Monday by lawyers for Msgr. William J. Lynn to free the 61-year-old former archdiocesan official on bail while he appeals his child-endangerment conviction. Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina rejected the motion by defense lawyers Jeffrey M. Lindy and Alan J. Tauber after an often-acrimonious 15-minute hearing. On July 24, Sarmina sentenced Lynn to three to six years in prison after a jury found him guilty of child endangerment in the landmark Catholic clergy sex-abuse trial.
NEWS
August 7, 2012 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Citing the "serious nature of his conduct," a Philadelphia judge on Monday denied a request by lawyers for Msgr. William J. Lynn to free the 61-year-old former archdiocesan official on bail while he appeals his child-endangerment conviction. Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina rejected the motion by defense lawyers Jeffrey M. Lindy and Alan J. Tauber after an often acrimonious 15-minute hearing. On July 24, Sarmina sentenced Lynn to three to six years in prison after a jury found him guilty of child endangerment in the landmark Catholic clergy sex-abuse trial.
NEWS
July 31, 2012 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Staff Writer
Pennsylvania State University president Rodney Erickson said Sunday a "combination of funds," including insurance coverage, would be used to pay the $60 million fine the NCAA imposed as well as the costs of any litigation brought by victims of former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. On CBS's Face the Nation , Erickson said the university would likely provide a long-term loan to the athletic department from its financial reserves to pay the fine. On Tuesday, the NCAA imposed the fine and a four-year ban on the football team's postseason play and vacated all the team's victories dating to 1998.
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