A critic of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power called on the state’s top prosecutor this week to investigate the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office over how it handled a legal settlement to remedy 2013 billing errors that overcharged some customers and undercharged others.
Jamie Court, president of the nonprofit group Consumer Watchdog, alleged in a letter Wednesday to Attorney General Xavier Becerra that because of a possible legal conflict of interest, customers were “denied a fair settlement,” and have failed to receive “a resolution to their billing error problems, which continue to this day.”
Testimony and documents submitted in federal court earlier this month said that an outside attorney retained to defend the city and the utility also represented a ratepayer who was the lead plaintiff in a 2015 class action lawsuit against the city.
In a statement, the City Attorney’s Office said it had not been informed of the possibility that the attorney was retained by both sides and was investigating if the allegation was true. City Attorney Mike Feuer said last week that his office has been consulting with legal ethics expert Ellen Pansky to review the allegations.