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Article posted: 7/6/2013 8:00 AM

Grafton Twp. officials shocked by $42,000 legal bill

By Lenore T. Adkins

Even though Grafton Township has shelled out more than $654,000 in legal fees stemming from various lawsuits that involved its former supervisor, it's an unpaid legal bill of about $42,000 that's giving the township sticker shock.

The township is trying to reduce the bill, which comes from one of former township supervisor Linda Moore's two attorneys, Township Attorney Joseph Gottemoller said.

Township officials don't want to pay the entire bill because to them, it makes no sense to spend roughly $42,000 on a lawsuit that was contesting about $7,000 in unpaid bills.

"It's way too much compared to what the suit was over," Township Supervisor James Kearns said Friday.

In 2011, then-township road district commissioner Jack Freund filed a lawsuit against Moore, claiming she owed him about $7,000 in health insurance, rent and other bills he said she refused to pay.

A McHenry County judge dismissed the case in June because the parties involved in the lawsuit are no longer in office, which rendered the lawsuit moot.

Moore was involved in two other lawsuits with the township that have also been dismissed.

The township board later paid all of the items Freund was contesting, but the $42,000 legal bill remains.

Gottemoller had a discussion with Moore's attorney, Timothy Hoppa, in June to see about negotiating the number down. Gottemoller is still waiting on a final answer from Hoppa, who could not be reached for comment Friday.

"The other side has to decide what they want to do. It's not up to us," Gottemoller said.

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