Legislature signs contract ahead of ‘likely’ lawsuit

A Minneapolis law firm has been formally retained to represent the Legislature in a possible lawsuit against Gov. Mark Dayton.

A contract signed Friday covers the scope and hourly cost of the Legislature’s legal representation. The firm Kelley, Wolter and Scott will charge lawmakers half its normal hourly rate for the work, but that still ranges from $90 an hour for paralegal time to $325 for principal attorney Doug Kelley.

The Republican-controlled Legislature is preparing to sue the DFL governor over his recent line-item veto. It nixed roughly $130 million from House and Senate operating budgets. That action has left the legislative branch without ongoing money for operations when the new fiscal year begins in July.

Such a lawsuit — described as “likely” in the contract — could begin at the district court level but ultimately make its way to the state Supreme Court.

“We agree to represent you in this litigation through its final resolution in the state courts,” the contract agreement says.

The contract calls for a single invoice upon conclusion of the potential case.

  • Fred

    Governor Dayton was pretty naive to think that the Republicans would go back to the negotiating table after Democrats agreed to a deal. He should have sought other opinions on this matter. Even Democrats are saying his defunding of the legislature is unconstitutional. It doesn’t appear that he’s gotten any smarter since Time Magazine named him the worst US Senator a few years ago.