MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Mobile City Council voted to approve a separate attorney for council member Joel Daves Tuesday.
This comes during a legal battle between the council and Mayor Sandy Stimpson. This started with the termination of city council spokesperson Marion Steinfels. On November 13, the council approved a professional services contract with Steinfels to re-hire her as the council’s spokesperson. The vote was 6-1 in favor of the measure. Joel Daves was the only one who voted against the measure. The mayor vetoed the resolution, but on November 27, the council overrode the mayor’s veto, again with 6-1 vote. Daves again was the only one who voted against the measure.
On December 6, Mayor Stimpson filed a lawsuit in the circuit court against the council. In the complaint, all of the council members, including Daves, are named as defendants.
During the final city council meeting of the year on Tuesday, the council unanimously approved a resolution for Daves to have his own attorney in the lawsuit.
“I can’t be defended by either the council’s attorney, because I don’t agree with the position the council has taken. And I can’t be defended by the mayor’s attorneys because the mayor included all of the councilpersons, so I’m a defendant in the lawsuit. So I needed a lawyer, and as you can see, the council agreed with me. I needed a lawyer to represent me in this matter. I don’t anticipate we’re going to take an active stance in this one way or another, but it became clear again that I couldn’t be represented by either the council’s attorney or mayor’s attorneys,” said Daves after the meeting.
The lawyer’s fees will be paid by taxpayer money. Archibald Reeves will represent Daves in the lawsuit. Per the resolution, Reeves will be paid $200 an hour.