HONOLULU (AP) - Members of the Honolulu City Council have rejected a request to hire a mainland law firm to cope with a federal criminal investigation of the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Wednesday that city attorneys expect the inquiry will result in subpoenas or other requests for information about the authority’s $9.2 billion rail project.
The council's Committee on Executive Matters and Legal Affairs voted Tuesday to reject a request by the city corporation counsel to spend up to $50,000 on a contract with Farella Braun & Martel LLP.
Officials say corporation council attorneys are civil lawyers and cannot handle criminal matters.
The 4-3 vote effectively kills the plan to hire the San Francisco-based law firm, forcing city employees served with subpoenas to find their own legal counsel.