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Blame AG Frosh for Md. taxpayers’ $382K legal tab | READER COMMENTARY

In this June 12, 2017 file photo, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh speaks during a news conference in Washington, D.C. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)
In this June 12, 2017 file photo, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh speaks during a news conference in Washington, D.C. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File) (Alex Brandon/AP)

Let me get this straight. Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh recused himself from the case involving Gov. Larry Hogan’s decision to end enhanced unemployment benefits to all Marylanders and hires a law firm that, if my math is correct, charges roughly $555 an hour. Now, Mr. Frosh wants us, the taxpayers of Maryland, to pay for it?

Mr. Frosh’s office blames the governor and says Mr. Hogan’s office should pay for it but, in reality, if the attorney general had taken the case himself, we would not be paying the Venable law firm $382,000 (”Private law firm charges Maryland $382K for unsuccessful defense of early end to unemployment benefits,” Sept. 7).

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As reported in The Baltimore Sun, the lawyers billed 688.2 hours worth of work valued at $381,952.50. They also billed the state for $696.56 worth of filing fees and other court costs. This work was accomplished from June 30 through Aug. 20. The lawyers even had the hubris to charge for as little as one-tenth of an hour (six minutes) to answer an email.

Wow, I wish I could get paid $55 for 10 minutes of work. Mr. Frosh must have known how much this was going to cost. Oh, and did I mention that Venable, despite all their high cost and fancy lawyers, lost the case? But they made $382,000, so not a bad catch after all for them. I would love to see their list of every hour worked and what was accomplished in that hour.

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No, Mr. Frosh, this one should be on you for not having the guts to handle the case yourself as you get paid to do. Stop screwing the taxpayers.

Stas Chrzanowski, Baltimore

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