Winning attorneys are asking for $6.9 million in legal fees after they won the Albany County redistricting case last month. As reported by the Times Union, “At issue now is how much the attorneys ought to be reimbursed for nearly four years of litigation required to force the county to comply with the Voting Rights Act and to draw a fifth legislative district in which minority voters are a majority.
The attorneys — Paul DerOhannesian II of Albany and a New York City-based team from the firm Gibson Dunn — contend the request “serves the public good” because the reason the law allows them to recoup fees is to encourage lawyers to take risky cases to protect people’s rights.”
Albany County Attorney Tom Marcelle calls the request “”monstrously inflated” by the use of New York City billing rates. But Gibson Dunn argues that even using lower upstate rates charged by DerOhannesian’s firm — between $215 and $375 an hour — the firm’s bill is $2.9 million.”