Cory Briggs, Jan Goldsmith
  • Cory Briggs, Jan Goldsmith
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The city council today, (July 29) by a 7-1 vote, approved spending taxpayer money up to $150,000 to pay city attorney Jan Goldsmith's legal bills.

The lawsuit against Goldsmith forces him to reveal the contents of emails he sent to reporters and others during a period when he and other politicians were trying to get favorable press coverage in the ousting of former mayor Bob Filner

Goldsmith was using private email accounts to conduct city business. The lawsuit was filed by attorney Cory Briggs representing San Diegans for Open Government, charging that Goldsmith was spending public money illegally.

Many San Diegans feel the content of these messages will shed light on how the press — particularly U-T San Diego — was manipulated during the Filner imbroglio.

Councilmember David Alvarez was the only one to vote no. Today, Alvarez sent a message to Goldsmith, asking questions such as, "If outside counsel has already been engaged, why wasn't this brought forward sooner to council for approval?"

Also, asked Alvarez, if the outside counsel had already been hired, "how much money have the services cost?" As the Reader's Dorian Hargrove reported, Goldsmith had engaged outside counsel before getting council's permission. His office has threatened to sue Briggs for defamation — a threat Briggs and his lawyer have scoffed at.

After former mayor Jerry Sanders spent $123,000 to investigate city auditor Eduardo Luna, the latter hired an attorney. Luna is not popular at City Hall because of his investigations into bookkeeping at the Development Services Department and the convention center.

The council has not docketed Luna's attempt to be reimbursed for his $60,580 defense.

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Comments

Anon92107 July 30, 2014 @ 4:05 a.m.

Veterans are helpless, children are starving, but the City Council continues to bankrupt San Diego by feeding the army of corrupt lawyers/judges like the City Attorney, flushing millions of dollars down the legal/judicial sewer.

It's time for Goldsmith to follow Filner out of City Hall, we must eradicate his culture of corruption today.

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 6:43 a.m.

Anon92107: Agreed. It is time for Goldsmith to be ousted. But will it happen? He is the downtown corporate welfare crowd's loyal servant. And that crowd runs San Diego. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 6:45 a.m.

KathyAnn Knudson: Cory Briggs is doing the right thing pursuing this case. Goldsmith's emails must ALL be revealed. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 6:46 a.m.

David Lundin: Yes, Goldsmith's legal position is absurd, and should self-destruct before any court. But remember: this is San Diego. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 6:50 a.m.

Chuck Radloff: Agreed. Shoveling out taxpayer money to defend a city attorney who uses his private account to email information to his favorite reporters is crazy. There is no defense for this. Those emails have to be made public. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 6:53 a.m.

Chuck Radloff: That's what the public has a right to know: what else is Goldsmith hiding in those private emails that deal with city business? Now, since the public is paying for his defense, it is even more urgently necessary for the public to learn if and how he has been manipulating the media. Best, Don Bauder

1

MURPHYJUNK July 30, 2014 @ 8:53 a.m.

Goldsmith probably had enough dirt on some ( most ?) of the council members to get what ever he wants.

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 1:06 p.m.

Murphyjunk: I would not be surprised if Goldsmith operates like the J. Edgar Hoover of San Diego -- threatening to reveal something if a council member doesn't march in line. Best, Don Bauder

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patflannery July 31, 2014 @ 3:41 a.m.

And he probably uses Todd Gloria to deliver the message: vote this way or the City Attorney will do a Filner on you.

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Don Bauder July 31, 2014 @ 8:12 a.m.

patflannery: Exactly. The smearing of Filner will be a noose hanging over every politician's neck for some time. I would not be surprised at all if the scenario was exactly as you described: Goldsmith let Gloria know that if the council didn't vote his way, some people -- Gloria included -- would be besmirched. Best, Don Bauder

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Anon92107 July 30, 2014 @ 11:26 a.m.

Don, New York City and Chicago were two of the most corrupt cities in the 20th century.

As you have been documenting, "Pope" Doug Manchester has dedicated his entire U-T empire to making San Diego the most corrupt American city in the 21st century.

The Pope's Puppet-Mayor and Puppet-City Attorney have been ordered to make that their Number One Priority.

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Don Bauder July 30, 2014 @ 1:07 p.m.

Anon92107: I can't disagree with your assessments. Best, Don Bauder

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Ponzi July 30, 2014 @ 10:25 p.m.

Someone should look into the city time and resources Goldsmith was devoting to the Romney campaign while on city time. It is extensive and shocking.

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Don Bauder July 31, 2014 @ 8:16 a.m.

Ponzi: Yes: how much time was he devoting to the Romney campaign? He has already admitted that he was working on ousting Filner early in the year, not long after Filner was elected. He was surrepetitiously feeding information to certain friendly reporters in that effort. It is time all that came out. None of those emails can be hidden from public view. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 31, 2014 @ 8:19 a.m.

John W. Stump III: I disagree. In San Diego, so many elections are decided by which side has the most money. That is how the corporate welfare crowd controls the city despite not having a majority of citizens sympathetic with its rapaciousness.

I will never set aside people's right to transparency, even for a moment. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 31, 2014 @ 8:20 a.m.

Chuck Radloff: Amen. What else is Goldsmith hiding? Best, Don Bauder

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