Marty Walsh Increases Defense Attorney’s Taxpayer-Funded Contact to $200,000

The city is paying Brian T. Kelly $625 an hour.

Photo via Mayor's Office/Isabel Leon

Photo via Mayor’s Office/Isabel Leon

Mayor Marty Walsh increased his high-profile defense attorney’s taxpayer-funded contact to $200,000, as federal investigators continue to probe whether City Hall used strong-arm tactics to force the Boston Calling music festival into using union labor.

Walsh first inked a $50,000 contract with attorney Brian T. Kelly of Boston law firm Nixon Peabody last fall, when a city official had been named in a criminal indictment alleging local Teamsters had bullied Top Chef for using non-union workers. The investigation cleared the city official of any wrongdoing.

Since then, the city upped Kelly’s taxpayer-funded contact to $100,000 on January 25, and again to $200,000 on February 1, the Globe reports. While Kelly has given the city a considerable discount, his rate of $625 an hour is still three times what the city typically pays outside lawyers.

“The original contracted amount did not anticipate the complexity and protracted nature of these matters and was insufficient to meet the costs of the services being rendered,” the city’s corporation counsel, Eugene O’Flaherty, told the Globe.

Walsh’s administration has been rocked by reports that the mayor had been drawn into a federal labor probe for his activities as head of the Boston Building Trades in 2012. Last Friday, the Globe reported the feds were also investigating City Hall’s interactions with Boston Calling in 2014, in which Kenneth Brissette, the city’s director of tourism, sports, and entertainment, allegedly told organizers the festival would face difficulty if it didn’t hire union stagehands.