Pittsburgh City Council postponed action on a bill that would pay $25,000 in legal fees for a Downtown strip club to settle a federal lawsuit .
One Three Five Inc., which owns Blush, sued the city for violation of its constitutional rights after the acting Chief Regina McDonald informed the club in March that off-duty officers were no longer permitted to work there as security guards. The ban came on the heels of criticism of the bureau’s secondary employment operation.
In June, a judge granted a preliminary injunction forcing the city to allow officers to work at the club, calling the prohibition on officers working at strip clubs as security guards a “purely discriminatory governmental action.” Because the club successfully sued for a violation of its constitutional rights, the city is on the hook for legal fees, said assistant city solicitor Wendy Kobee.
City council was scheduled to have a preliminary vote today on the payment, but it was postponed because it has to be discussed in executive session, said council President Darlene Harris. The payment, which has to be approved by council and the mayor, would effectively end the legal battle between the city and One Three Five Inc.
Jonathan Kamin, the attorney who represented the company in the suit, declined comment Tuesday.
A vote on the proposed payment likely will take place next week.