Failed issue costs city

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 26, 2008


The failed $12.3 million bond issue will still cost Selma residents $30,000 in attorneys fees.

City Finance Director Cynthia Mitchell gave the bill to the Selma City Council on Monday. The council had approved already to pay the attorney, but no such deal was struck with the investment bankers.

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The bill was submitted by Terri A. Sewell of Maynard Cooper & Gale of Birmingham for legal services rendered for the referendum. Perkins signed a contract on behalf of the city last October that called for the attorney to advise on and prepare documentation relating to the bond vote and the ballot.

The bill handed to the council does not itemize the hours spent on the project or any other items. The single-page invoice is for fees and out-of-pocket expenses for legal services that include legal consultant and advice, draft of various resolutions for the council, attendance at meetings, documents related to the vote, ballot and legal notices, among other things.

In her letter, Sewell said she gave the city a 25 percent discount from her standard professional rate because the firm appreciates the city’s business. Sewell is a Selma native.

Voters rejected the $12.3 million bond issue last month. The money was to be spread over a number of projects in different departments.