City expects to spend $84,200 in anticipated legal fees this year

Linda Trest
Staff Writer

The city has approved a budget that includes payments of $84,200 in legal fees in 2019. Last year, the budget for legal fees was $54,000. In 2017, the amount was $46,800. 

A lawsuit filed by Bull Moose Tube, Co. against the city over annual lease payments has kept the city’s legal team busy and the legal bills mounting. The city is currently in arrears to Cunningham, Vogel & Rost, PC for some of their work done in that case. Dave Struebel, of that firm, is the city’s legal counsel.

City Clerk Jane Hungler told The Republican that she was too busy Monday or Tuesday to answer budget questions over the phone. She did respond to emails later Tuesday afternoon. 

When asked how much of the $84,200 budgeted for legal fees will be used to pay off the existing balance Hungler wrote, “Existing balance is 175,700±, budget is for anticipated legal fees to be paid”.

Struebel was not present at the December meeting of the Board of Aldermen. Ward 1 Alderman Steve Grgurich said he does not expect Struebel to attend the January meeting either in an attempt to rein in legal costs.

The next hearing scheduled in the Bull Moose Tube, Co. vs. City of Gerald case is Aug. 29.