Take a look at the newest invoice from the attorney hired by the Board of Education to serve only the Board of Education without a public and transparent discussion by the entire Board.
This month, the taxpayers received a discount of $10,107.00, which also doesn’t match the contract terms.
Again, the information as to what this attorney is doing (services appear to be occurring nearly every day of the month again), has been redacted under the claim of “Confidential attorney-client privileged information.”
So, let’s look into attorney-client privilege.
A simple google search shows the following – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_professional_privilege
In common law jurisdictions, legal professional privilege protects all communications between a professional legal adviser and his or her clients from being disclosed without the permission of the client. The privilege is that of the client and not that of the lawyer.
The purpose behind this legal principle is to protect an individual’s ability to access the justice system by encouraging complete disclosure to legal advisers without the fear that any disclosure of those communications may prejudice the client in the future.
Is the attorney offering legal advice within the invoice? In most invoices from attorneys that we have seen, they include items (prepared by someone in the accounts receivable/accounts payable department, not covered under attorney-client privilege) such as “research, consultation, travel, conference call, negotiations.” How is a line item of services provided and paid for by the community privileged information? No professional attorney would advise a client to hire, fire, or provide legal product within an invoice.
Additionally, we have a hard time believing that confidential legal advice is given to this board in an invoice nearly every day within a one month period.
It really is past time for the public discussion of the hiring of this attorney and what specifically this attorney is doing for the board of education. The discount pricing may not last forever and the schools could end up paying a $17,607.00 invoice in full.