CMWD Votes To Continue Lawsuit

By Daryl Kelly

In a split vote, directors of the Casitas Municipal Water District agreed Wednesday to continue a costly lawsuit against the federal government by retaining a Washington lawyer on a “contingency” contract under which he’d be paid only if he won the case.The new contract with property rights lawyer Roger Marzulla, however, was controversial partly because the district agreed to pick up all other expenses related to pressing the case except for the fees of the Marzulla legal team.The expenses charged to the district as the case proceeds, perhaps even to the U.S. Supreme Court, would include those paid for court and jury fees, process charges, court reporting and transcription fees, consultants’ fees, and all costs for expert witnesses.  The district has already spent about $500,000 on the four-year-old case. On Wednesday, officials did not estimate how much more the case could eventually cost if Casitas loses. Instead of fees, Marzulla would now get 22.5 percent of any award

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