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Government and People
1327 Girard Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009-4915
202-234-6982, fax 202-234-6982
December 18, 2003
Ms. Cecily E. Collier-Montgomery
Re: Investigation 03-04
Dear Ms. Collier-Montgomery:
This is in response to your letter of December 3, 2003, requesting any additional information that I may have about this investigation.
List of individuals who can provide additional information
Mr. Tom Lindenfeld, LSG Strategies, 2120 L Street, NW, Suite 305, Washington, DC 20037. 202-638-7661 x420, work; 202-669-7970, cell; 202-244-8784, home.
Ms. Sherri L. Wyatt, counsel to Mr. Lindenfeld, 1217 12th Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20005. 202-216-9850, work; 202-251-4103, cell.
Ms. Diane Simmons Williams, 2475 Virginia Avenue, NW, Apt. 829, Washington, DC 20037.
Mayor Anthony Williams, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20005. 202-727-2980, work.
Mr. Robert Krasne and Ms. Margaret Keeley, Williams and Connolly, 725 12th Street, NW, Washington, DC. 202-434-5000, work.
Mr. Douglas Patton and Mr. Damien Stewart, Holland and Knight, 2100 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC. 202-955-3000, work.
Mr. Vincent Mark Policy, Greenstein, DeLorme and Luchs, 1620 L Street, NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20036. 202-452-1400, work.
The mediation session
The court ordered mediation session was held on July 31, 2003, at 9:00 a.m. Present at that session were Sherri Wyatt, Tom Lindenfeld, Vincent Mark Policy, Diane Simmons Williams, and Damien Stuart. Judge Alperin presided. The issue of payment arose in Judge Alperin’s discussion of reasons to settle the litigation at that stage and at that time.
Possible proofs of payments to Mr. Policy
Since this matter has come to light, Mr. Policy has stated that he is, in fact, "billing the Mayor." In order to establish that his financial relationship with Mayor Williams conforms to the normal and ordinary practices of Greenstein, DeLorme, and Luchs, Mr. Policy should be able to inform OCF about his normal hourly billing rate, the number of hours he and his associates have devoted to this case, and the normal billing and collection practices of the firm, including its policies with regard to nonpayment and to extending credit to clients. With regard to the matter of payments by the Mayor, Mr. Policy should be able to provide a retainer agreement with Mayor Williams dated on or about February 13, 2003; evidence of an escrow account having been established; billing records; and evidence of payment such as canceled checks.
Two expert witnesses who testified in the case for Mayor Williams were Tom King and Ron Ferchot, both of whom testified that their hourly rates of $400 and $250, respectively, were being paid by Mr. Policy. Mr. Policy should also be able to provide evidence that the costs associated with these witnesses were billed to and paid by his client.
DC Bar Rules
DC Bar rules and regulations require that attorneys make true and factual representations in all court-ordered proceedings, including mediation sessions, letters to opposing counsel, and court motions. Failure to do so makes an attorney subject to sanctions for unprofessional conduct. This creates a heavy presumption that Mr. Policy’s statements, letter to Ms. Wyatt, and court motion, all of which indicate that he was representing Mayor Williams on a pro bono basis, should be believed unless clear, convincing, and incontrovertible evidence is provided by Mr. Policy that his statements were false.
Lobbying Activities by Mr. Policy
In your letter of December 2, 2003, you indicate that Mr. Policy has lobbied the Mayor on Bill 15-133. In addition, Mr. Policy and his firm have lobbied the Mayor and the City Council on behalf of their clients on a wide range of matters, including among others AOBA’s support for the Mayor’s efforts to abolish the Rental Housing Commission, AOBA’s efforts to dismantle rent control, AOBA’s opposition to the DC Water and Sewer Authority’s attempts to meter and bill for ground water discharges.
Federal Election Commission Rules and Regulations
In reviewing this matter, the OCF may wish to use a long-standing practice of the Board of Elections and Ethics, namely, to look at how the Federal Election Commission handles similar matters that come before it. With regard to legal and accounting services that may be provided to a candidate and/or a campaign, the FEC enforces the following policy:
"Businesses, including corporations, may support candidates in yet another way. If the business employs individuals who perform legal or accounting services, the business may provide unlimited free services to a political committee as long as certain qualifications are met:
I am enclosing two attachments:
Thank you for the opportunity to provide this information. If there is anything else that I can provide, please do not hesitate to contact me.
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