What would lawyer Brian Bowman say, about Mayor Brian Bowman’s lawyer?

I have already written about city hall having a lawyer problem.
No, not the 3 sitting on council- Mayor Bowman, Coun. Marantz, and Coun. Mayes- , but the lawyers they employ for the City.
When the news broke that city lawyers would not face Wise Up Winnipeg’s Todd Dube in a courtroom showdown over the Snow Zone tickets
“A lawyer for the city would not say why the case was dropped.
Is this the kind of transparency Mayor Bowman promised in the election campaign?
I have also heard that the same tactic is being used on appeals of construction zone tickets given out on Kenaston/Route 90 near IKEA.
Why do people think City lawyers have something to hide?”
city lawyers cartoon
And then in December, some of us had figured out a few more problems with the explanations the city belatedly offered:
“The city lawyer had already doubled down by claiming that it was still legal to ticket cars between 11pm-7 am, which Wise Up Winnipeg totally shredded in a pre-emptive letter on Friday telling the city that claim was also, a lie.
 City lawyers lied years ago, they lied when they claimed they only found out in November the plowing bylaw wasn’t legal when Todd Dube took them to court (the required dictum would have been filed with the Court of Appeal months before) and they lied that tickets overnight was still allowed under the Highway Traffic Act (not without a bylaw specifically stating the times, it isn’t).”
Cover-up and lies, seemed to be the pattern.
And now, we learn that whatever tax dollars were spent on a highly legitimate cause of action against an engineering firm were flushed down the toilet by …. city lawyers.
Sued firm wins another job
City awards $16-M contract, despite claiming shoddy work
By: Aldo Santin   Posted: 01/29/2016
… the city was reviewing AECOM’s eligibility for the project in late November while the legal department was preparing a lawsuit against the firm at the same time.
The city filed legal action against AECOM on Dec. 7 over serious design and structural problems that have developed at the Deacon water-treatment plant. The company was awarded this ($16 Million) contract a month later, on Jan. 6.
AECOM was also named by the city in a 2013 suit after significant structural problems emerged following a $47-million upgrade to the West End sewage-treatment plant.
That suit against AECOM, and several other firms, was dismissed in November….
McNeil said the city will keep a closer eye on AECOM than was done in the past.”
Paging Mr. McNeil : How about keeping a closer eye on the city lawyers?
What comes next? Did you guess cover-ups and lies?
“The 2013 lawsuit stemmed from AECOM’s role designing a major component of a biological nutrient-removal upgrade project at the West End sewage-treatment plant, located at the southwest corner of Wilkes Avenue and the Perimeter Highway — work similar to the upgrade project planned for the North End plant.
The 2013 suit was thrown out in November after it appears city lawyers bungled the statement of claim.
  • The judge said the city failed to include the contract with AECOM;
  • failed to show the firm’s contractual obligations and how the contract was allegedly breached;
  • and whether the defects in the plant were caused by the breach of contract or breach of duty of care.”
Now, let’s say, for arguments’ sake, you and your husband/partner had a house built.
And let’s say, that when you took possession,
  • the basement wasn’t level,
  • the windows and doors were drafty,
  • and the roof leaked.
And you tell your lawyer, sue the builder.
And let’s say, that in a lawsuit OVER A CONTRACT, your lawyer didn’t file the contract, or tell the court what the deliverables were that the builder didn’t meet, and/or whether this was because of substandard materials or inadequate suyupervision of the sub-trades.
If YOUR lawyer did that, what would you do?
I bet if you took your case to their law firms, and asked lawyer Bowman, or lawyer Marantz, or lawyer Mayes, they would tell you and your family:
“Go to the Law Society.”
Not only were taxpayers ripped off – and insulted by AECOM being given even more business – now the city lawyers ripped them off too.
WE are the clients of the city lawyers because WE are paying their wages.
And for a second time in 3 months, there are good questions about what city lawyers knew, what they said, and what they did.
And who will be held responsible.
Until Bowman and city council gets to the bottom of it, no one will believe it was a simple, innocent “oversight” from a legal department (already tainted by god-know how many peculiar land/fire hall/ construction deals), that they somehow “just forgot” to include the most basic pieces of a straightforward Statement of Claim for a contract dispute.
Or, as I wrote in November
“Why do people think City lawyers have something to hide?”
Will they complain to the Law Society on our behalf?
And if they don’t, what will Bowman and councillors do?
Because doing nothing and insisting we have to eat the loss of the likely lawsuit compensation and the legal costs because of alleged “bungling” of City of Winnipeg lawyers, is not an option.


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