Legal Fees Questioned by Council

Kittanning Borough Ty Heller explains why his 4th quarter 2019 invoice was higher than normal.

An invoice submitted by Kittanning Borough Solicitor Ty Heller was questioned due to several charges.

Heller said that his retainer of $3,625 per quarter does not cover litigation or employment matters. He submitted charges of $891.50 for litigation charges regarding an issue on Sirwell Street.

“We were hoping it would settle without pleading, but we were directed by judge to respond,” Heller said.

Another $600 was charged for responding to Right-To-Know challenges by Beverly Soloski.

Heller said there was a lot of “back and forth” between his office and the Office of Open Records in Harrisburg. He said there was an appeal of a determination that a record did not exist for administrative search warrants. Heller said he had to confirm with the borough and District Magisterial Judge James Owen to give a proper response.

“Although I billed four hours at $150 per hour on her responses for specific legal information, I did not bill for an additional 12 hours I spent working on the project,” he said.

The total amount of his October-December 2019 invoice was $5,116.50.