Legal Costs Outlined
In response to an inquiry at a recent City Council meeting, today Costa Mesa Interim Communications Director Bill Lobdell issued a Press Release outlining the "before" and "after" of our legal expenditures. The "before" is prior to the hiring of Jones & Mayer as our contract City Attorney. The "after", logically, quantifies the costs following Jones & Mayer's hiring. The year in which that transition took place , the 2004/2005 fiscal year, is NOT included in their calculations for the average costs. You can read the press release and the attachment spread sheet HERE.
SAVED A HALF-MILLION DOLLARS PER YEAR
So, according to Lobdell, using Jones & Mayer has been a real deal for the city, which apparently saved, on average, more than a half million dollars each year. Keep in mind, too, that a couple of those years included the ill-conceived Benito Acosta lawsuits.
WHAT ABOUT THE RESULTS?
What is missing is any indication of judgments and settlements for those years. After all is said and done, the proof of the value of an attorney is the job he does for you in court - or keeping you out of court. One of the rationale's used for outsourcing our legal department was the perceived need for litigation strength - which Jones & Mayer and the other bidding law firms said they possessed. I'd like to know what our legal actions cost the city - or earned for the city - before and after Jones & Mayer. That would complete the picture for me.