Here come the big money lawsuits

Here come the big money lawsuits
Image courtesy of Mulad on Flickr

A second developer is poised to sue Minneapolis over a development proposal that got shot down. Sound like deja vu? It is.

Former Minneapolis City Councilman Steve Minn, who is now a developer, has prepared a lawsuit over his proposal for apartments near the east end of the Stone Arch bridge. Councilmember Diane Hofstede is at the center of the lawsuit, which would accuse her of backroom dealing, according to the Star Tribune's reporting.

Councilwoman Lisa Goodman is currently in the midst of a lawsuit accusing her of the same thing. A judge has ruled that Goodman was biased against Brad Hoyt's Loring Hill development project, violating him of his rights to due process--but the City has appealed. Uh-oh. Looks like Hoyt's lawsuit could be the first of many.

Goodman's defenders, who expect the judge's ruling to be overturned at the state's Appeals Court, have said she did nothing differently from any other councilmember--she was simply representing her constituents.

Hofstede has declined to comment on the draft lawsuit targeting her actions. However, her colleagues Sandy Colvin Roy and Barbara Johnson, did speak out against the allegations. Here's more about the potential lawsuit from a story last week in the Strib

The developers' draft civil complaint alleges that Hofstede and Colvin Roy made a behind-the-scenes deal in which Colvin Roy agreed to lead motions against the first proposal if Hofstede supported her on 12th Ward issues. The proposed apartment building would be in Hofstede's Third Ward.

The draft complaint alleges that Hofstede repeatedly lobbied other council members against the project in a way that violates the state's Open Meeting Law.

"It did not happen," Colvin Roy said of the alleged deal. Hofstede didn't return Star Tribune calls. Johnson said she wasn't lobbied on the matter by any council member.

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