Dewey Beach to Provide Notice Before Paying Town Manager's Legal - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dewey Beach to Provide Notice Before Paying Town Manager's Legal Fees

Posted: 09/26/2017 16:14:00 -04:00 Updated:
Dewey Beach Town Hall (Photo: WBOC) Dewey Beach Town Hall (Photo: WBOC)

DEWEY BEACH, Del. - The Town of Dewey Beach says it will provide two business days' notice before paying Town Manager Marc Appelbaum's legal fees.

On Friday, Dewey Beach's town commissioners voted to indemnify Appelbaum, meaning they would compensate him legally if need be. On Monday, Rick Cross, the lawyer for the complainants suing Appelbaum and the town filed a motion for a temporary restraining order stopping any indemnification payments while the matter is in court. On Tuesday, ahead of a scheduled hearing, an agreement was reached.

According to Cross, the town agreed it would withhold any indemnification payments while the issue is decided by the courts. But Fred Townsend, the Dewey Beach Town Solicitor, says they agreed to provide two days notice before any payments are made. None have been made yet. 

"The council is currently transitioning and they're not in a rush to make the payments," says Townsend, referring to the new council sworn in on Saturday. "But they will when they are ready and if Mr. Cross wants to contest them he is free to do that."

After the indemnification vote, Cross said he believed the vote was not allowed under town code. He echoed that statement in an email Tuesday.

"My clients are confident that when a final decision is made, Mr. Appelbaum will lose any right to indemnification based on the Town’s own code," he writes. 

Cross' re-filed his clients' Chancery Court lawsuit last week and says the state's Public Integrity Commission is still investigating the claims against Appelbaum. The Dewey Beach commissioners have yet to vote on the independent investigator's recommendations in the case, such as formally reprimanding Appelbaum and requiring him to take classes. There is no word yet on when that vote could occur.


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