Portsmouth Councilman Bill Moody ends lawsuit with city

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. – City Councilman Bill Moody and the city have agreed to settle the lawsuit he filed last year, his lawyer said Friday.

There is no formal settlement agreement, but Moody agreed to drop the suit in exchange for the city paying $10,000 for his legal feels, according to Kevin Martingayle, Moody’s attorney.

Moody sued the city last year after he was fined $1500 for violating a city council rule that said members couldn’t speak publicly about closed session issues. Last June, a judge ruled in Moody’s favor that the city council violated the Freedom of Information Act by fining him. The rule has since been repealed, so Martingayle said there was no reason to continue the legal fight.

Martingayle says the case was never about money and he accepted lower attorney fees because he felt it was the right thing for him to do.

Last August, a spokesperson disclosed the city had paid nearly $55,000 to defend the case. News 3 reached out to see if there are updated figures, but didn’t hear back.