NEW JERSEY 101.5

Brick Township is looking into the overcharging of legal fees by one of its attorneys, which cost the taxpayers thousands of dollars.

John Ducey claims victory in Brick's Mayoral race (Jason Allentoff, Townsquare Media NJ)

Newly-elected Brick Mayor John Ducey says alternate Township Attorney Bianca Sangiovanni, daughter of Councilman Joseph Sangiovanni, billed the township per client instead of per session.

As a result, Ducey says she was charging the township $250 for each defendant rather than $250 for each daily session. That move cost the Brick roughly over $20,000, according to figures from the Asbury Park Press.

"A worst case example, there was one date in September 2011 which she saw, so she billed the town $2,500 instead of $250," Ducey said.

The mayor-elect says legal, as well as all other contracts, will be inspected even more thoroughly, since in previous years expenses were green-lighted with little oversight.

"Prior to 2012 when I took office in council, the entire council and mayor were all the same political party, and everything was being rubber stamped and approved seven-zero, seven-zero, seven-zero," Ducey explained.

While Ducey notes Sangiovanni told him that other municipalities charged in a similar fashion, the new mayor disagrees.

"I've been a municipal prosecutor in a number of towns over the year, and everything is always per session," he said.

Ducey added if not per session, fees can be paid in a yearly sum.

"I've never heard it done per client because it would just be outrageous the amount of money being paid."