Monday, June 13, 2016

Updated; Updated; Mayor Nancy Vaughan, the City of Greensboro and the News and Record's Margaret Moffett lied to the public on Vaughan's legal [subsidy] bill

Jeff Sykes, June 9, 2016; City pays personal legal fees for Mayor Vaughan

The City of Greensboro has paid more than $8,500 in legal fees for an outside law firm to personally represent Mayor Nancy Vaughan in a case involving environmental cleanup funds for the South Elm Redevelopment, more commonly known as Union Square.

...In an article published in the Greensboro News & Record in October, it was reported that Vaughan intended to pay her own expenses for hiring Amiel Rossabi to represent her personally during the legal proceedings. ...A Rhino Times article in January reported that Vaughan "hired Amiel Rossabi, of Rossabi, Black and Slaughter to represent her personally, the day before the deposition.

And the City did nothing to counter the reported facts
that Vaughan didn't hire a lawyer in October, 2015
as the City hired Rossabi in September, 2015 for the deposition
meaning City Manager Jim Westmoreland and other staff lied to the public
and the News and Record reported the story as transmitted by the City

"Rossabi advised his client Vaughan not to answer the questions asked during the deposition including: “Mayor Vaughan, have you ever been deposed before?” As well as, “Would you state your full name for the record, Mayor Vaughan?”

The first time Vaughan was deposed, she hired Amiel Rossabi,
of Rossabi, Black and Slaughter to represent her personally,
the day before the deposition. 

Who told John Hammer Amiel was hired the day before?

The deposition devolved into a verbal battle 
between Rossabi and Robert’s attorney, Scott Hale of Boydoh & Hale.

Patrick Kane of Smith Moore Leatherwood and Carruthers
were also present for the deposition but didn’t become involved in the verbal brawl.

In a memo dated June 7, 2016 and released following a record's request by YES! Weekly, Chief Deputy City Attorney Jo Peterson-Buie addresses the $8,545 legal payment to Rossabi's former law firm. Rossabi Black and Slaughter billed the city for Vaughan's legal fees on Feb. 17 of this year. The firm broke up on May 1 and the new firm, Black Slaughter Black requested payment. Rossabi formed Rossabi Law Partners and confirmed that the payment for representing Vaughan should go to his former partners.

The memo states that the city entered into a contract with Rossabi Black and Slaughter on Sept. 21, 2015. 

I have asked for a copy of the contract from the City

The memo states that Rossabi represented Vaughan at her deposition on Oct. 21. The memo mentions no additional representation. 

Vaughan, the City, Margaret Moffett and the News and Record lied to their readers
Greensboro's taxpayers and the public

Margaret Moffett; City to pay mayor's legal bill for deposition, Saturday, June 11, 2016 7:12 pm

"Taxpayers will pay more than $8,500 for the private lawyer Mayor Nancy Vaughan used last year during a deposition in a downtown developer’s lawsuit against the city.

Before the 2015 Greensboro City Council election

Vaughan said in October [2015, right before the election,] she would use her own money to pay the attorney who represented her personally during the deposition

After the City "entered into a contract with Rossabi Black and Slaughter on Sept. 21, 2015
meaning Mayor Vaughan and Margaret Moffett lied, 
as Jeff Sykes reported the Sept. 21, 2015 contract info on June 9, 2012,
meaning the News and Record purposefully mislead its readers
for the benefit of Greensboro Mayor Nancy Vaughan and Jim Westmoreland

On Friday, Vaughan said she changed her mind after learning from City Attorney Tom Carruthers that it would be “entirely appropriate” for the city to cover her fees to Amiel Rossabi.

The contract for Rossabi's services 
was "entered into a contract with Rossabi Black and Slaughter on Sept. 21, 2015
meaning Mayor Vaughan and Margaret Moffett lied

When did the conversation take place?

So Vaughan hired Rossabi, who directed Vaughan not to answer many of the questions during the deposition.

Which isn't true, as the City hired Rossabi on September 21, 2015
to represent Nancy Vaughan at the deposition
directly before a City Council election
meaning the election was rigged with the help of City staff and the News and Record

Paying Rossabi’s bill puts the city in an unusual position, since it is simultaneously arguing that it should not pay former Police Chief David Wray’s legal fees.

...Vaughan said she made the right decision letting the city pay Rossabi’s bill.

The decision was made in September, 2015 before the City Council election
and then Nancy Vaughan lied about it with the help of the News and Record's Margaret Moffitt

“There was no logical reason why I would be deposed,” Vaughan said. “It was a strong-arm tactic to force a settlement. I wasn’t going to be bullied by the opposing attorney.”

“It’s unfortunate that we’ve wasted so much money on this case.”

Nancy Vaughan and City staff were not honest, fair or responsible
to Greensboro's citizens.

Nancy Vaughan used her office for personal gain
by saying she was paying for council after the City signed a contract
with the same attorney for [dissimilar] services before an election;

So what work did the firm receive from the City
and how much more have they made total?

So it's not just "more than $8,500"?

How much more did they receive for services rendered,
and still undisclosed by the City or mayor Vaughan?

Public confidence in the integrity of its local government has been harmed
and now it looks like Amiel Rossabi wasn't prepared
and is now misleading the public as the contract was signed in September, 2015;

Hat Tip; Actual journalist Jeff Sykes
That being said, watch the whole thing disappear...