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Monday, August 23, 2010

Business Sues City...but...

Yes, the City of Scranton probably gets sued all the time. In fact, the city is currently being sued by the owners of a business called Olde Good Things. You can read the story HERE.

No biggie, right?

Well read the not-so-fine-print on this one:

"Represented by attorney Boyd Hughes, who also serves as city council's solicitor, Olde Good Things..."

I know, this probably happens all the time, but for some reason I'm going to stop on this one. Why? Call me insane, but it just seems, well, wrong that same attorney that the taxpayers pay to represent Scranton City Council is also being paid to sue the taxpayers of the City of Scranton. Oh, and please, let's dispense with the "city council is different that the administration..." bullcrap. That's legalistic nonsense which is nothing more than a diversion from the common sense that should rule in these instances.

I am sure that Attorney Hughes is not violating any of the rules. Well make that "not violating any of the written rules governing legal practice". But the fact remains that he could very well be getting paid by both the plaintiff and the defendant in this case. Maybe, just maybe, the appearance of a conflict of interest should be enough to raise an eyebrow or two.

One other point: would this story be getting more attention in the local Internet underbelly if the attorney in question were connected with Mayor Doherty instead of Council President Evans? This story smells an awful lot like the local politics/local connections as usual that, in theory, Mrs Evans is supposed to be against.

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