Lawyer calls for sanctions against Hinojosa, Port Isabel
City attorney responds: “He’s an embarrassment”
By DINA ARÉVALO
Port Isabel-South Padre Press
The legal battle between the City of Port Isabel and a former employee has become more heated in recent weeks.
Danny Goldberg, a Houston attorney representing former Port Isabel City Manager Ed Meza, has filed a motion to sanction the City and its attorney, Gilbert Hinojosa alleging, among other things, misconduct and filing a frivolous lawsuit.
Meza sued the City in 2017 after it terminated him in the spring of 2015. He alleges the City owes him a severance package equal to one year’s salary, as agreed to by the City Commission in 2010.*
But the City has refused to pay up, with City attorney Gilbert Hinojosa arguing that the severance agreement is an unenforceable contract. Hinojosa filed a counterclaim against Meza, alleging breach of fiduciary duty and implicating Meza in a host of allegations of misconduct.
The parties were ordered to attempt mediation at the beginning of this year, but those efforts failed, Goldberg said.
In his 15-page motion, filed with the 444th State District court on June 15, Goldberg cites 18 different exhibits to support his call for sanctions, saying the City filed a “sham document” to support its claims against Meza. He also said the City didn’t even have any evidence at the time the City filed its counterclaim.
*Correction: According to court documents, the severance agreement in question was signed by Mayor Joe E. Vega in July 2010, not 2008. The PRESS regrets the error.
Want the whole story? Pick up a copy of the Port Isabel-South Padre Press, or subscribe to our E-Edition by clicking here.