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Chad Seybold to pay for delay

BY Spencer Durham - sdurham@chronicle-tribune.com

Chad Seybold will have to reimburse the City of Marion for some of its attorney fees.

Superior Court III Judge Warren Haas signed on order, filed on June 13, requiring Seybold to pay about $4,600 in legal fees to the city due to the city bringing a motion of contempt against the former construction manager of the Old YMCA project for not meeting a court-mandated deadline to turnover devices with electronically stored in relation to the renovation.

The city alleges funds for the project went toward former Mayor Wayne Seybold's campaign, payments to family members and for personal expenses.

The deadline gave Seybold until Jan. 29 to make his devices available for electronic imaging. At a May hearing, Haas stated that Seybold was in violation of the order and gave him until June 1 to produce the devices.

Seybold has since complied. P. Adam Davis, attorney for Seybold, filed a document stating his client delivered his devices to QDiscovery, an Indianapolis IT service management company, on May 29.

In total, Seybold will pay the city $4,660.97. According to Eric McKeown, of Ice Miller, the firm representing the city, that sum was for 15.3 hours of work at a rate of $304.64 an hour.

Haas wrote in his order that the request from the city was “reasonable.” Seybold has until July 13 to pay the amount in full through the Clerk of Grant Circuit Court.

Haas denied a city request to have Seybold pay an additional $895.90 to cover the cost of drawing up the affidavit to request reimbursement of fees.

With Seybold's devices now made available and electronically imaged, a list of search terms will be applied. He will be allowed to review all documents and withhold any based on attorney-client privilege or for other reasons. According to an order signed by Superior Court I Judge Jeffrey Todd on Dec. 27, 2017, the city will be able to review the list of documents withheld and "may challenge the assertion of privilege with respect to any withheld document."

Since becoming judge of the case, Haas has expressed a desire to keep the case moving forward.

“... All I want is compliance,” the judge said at a hearing in May.

And Haas has kept the case moving. In addition to ruling on the issue of attorney fees, the judge also ruled in favor of the city's motion to compel against its former financial adviser, London Witte Group. The firm is named as a defendant in the case. The city has alleged negligence and breach of fiduciary duty against London Witte.

London Witte had been requested by the city to produce a number of documents and communications including any services provided to the Seybold campaign, services provided to the city itself and any sort of compensation received from any Seybold campaign, the city, Wayne Seybold or any related person.

Counsel for London Witte had argued against many of the requests stating they were too broad, too vague and would not lead to any “discoverable information.” Counsel for the firm had also argued some information that had been requested could violate confidentiality of clients. Further, counsel stated that some information requested, such as worked performed for the city, was already supplied via a subpoena.

In his ruling, Haas has given London Witte until July 10 to produce all information sought by the city.

The city’s attorneys had also asked that London Witte pay expenses brought by filing the motion. Haas did not make a ruling on this aspect and wrote in his order that it “remains open.”