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Langley’s legal fees hit high mark

The city of Langley may spend more than planned, once again, on its legal fees.

Langley officials expected to face legal bills of $35,000 this year. But after the most recent bills from the city attorney are paid at next week’s council meeting, Langley will have spent a total of $34,457 for legal services through May.

That leaves seven months to go. City Treasurer Debbie Mahler said this week that unless other bills come in lower than expected, the city will have to amend its general fund budget to reflect the increased spending.

Much of the money that spent on lawyers this year has gone to the city’s handling of the Langley Passage housing project.

Mahler said a total of $13,260 has been paid to Carol Morris, the outside attorney that handled the Langley Passage project for the city.

This year will mark the second in a row for Langley’s legal costs to rise above what was budgeted.

In 2010, Langley spent $60,205 on legal services — the highest since 2006, when the city battled Island County and county fair officials over the construction of Fairgrounds Road and spent $51,595.

The city spent $12,814 on legal fees in 2009, and $7,532 on attorney bills in 2008.

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