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Senate billed for legal services to deal with ex-employee Brodkorb

Posted by: Rachel E. Stassen-Berger under Minnesota state senators, Republicans Updated: May 23, 2012 - 4:14 PM

The legal bill has come due for the Minnesota Senate.

Secretary of the Senate Cal Ludeman said Wednesday that the Senate had received an invoice for legal services performed to defend it from potential litigation regarding ex-employee Michael Brodkorb's firing.

Brodkorb was fired after he had an affair with then Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch. His employment was ended in December the day after she stepped down from leadership in the wake of senators confronting her about the affair.

Ludeman said the Senate received the bill on Tuesday but he would not release it publicly until the leaders of the senate authorized him to pay it.

"I'm going to wait until I have the signatures authorizing payment thereof," Ludeman said. "We are about a day away."

The Senate disclosed last month that it was paying private attorney Dayle Nolan $330 an hour for advice about the Brodkorb situation. Although her original agreement bespoke of monthly bills, until Tuesday Senate officials said they had not received any invoices.

Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem, R-Rochester, said Wednesday that he had not yet seen the bill.

Asked whether he was more inclined to settle with Brodkorb or fight it out, Senjem said: "How do you weigh it? In the end it is probably lawyers' fees versus [settlement]...It's just how much time do you put into something like this versus how much do you get out of it," Senjem said.

Brodkorb has threatened to sue over his termination, claiming sexual discrimination because female senate employees were treated differently when they had affairs. He has said he will seek more than $500,000 in damages and legal costs.

He has filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a precursor to formal litigation, but has yet to file anything in a courtroom.

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