Frago's Racist E-Mails Cost Atwater Thousands of Dollars

October 9, 2009 10:36:50 PM PDT
City officials in Atwater say they have spent tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees since racist emails forwarded by a council member became public.The e-mails which contained racist jokes were sent by Councilmember Gary Frago.

The city has already shelled out about $60-thousand dollars to its law firm for help handling media requests and attending public and private meetings. And one councilman thinks the bills will eventually top $150-thousand dollars.

Atwater City Councilman Nelson Crabb said, "This comes out of the general fund, so it will affect our law enforcement, our public safety, and that's sad. In this economy, we've made a lot of cuts already and where are we going to get the money at?"

Atwater Mayor Joan Faul said, "We had to do that and we had follow the public information laws in order to keep us from getting into deeper legal problems."

Councilman Frago did not want to comment on the bills, but he told Action News over the phone -- he has apologized for the emails and is still trying to move forward.

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