Posted: Jan 28, 2013 6:31 PM by Morgan Frances - MFrances@kristv.com
Updated: Jan 28, 2013 7:02 PM
CORPUS CHRISTi - A dispute between the City of Corpus Christi and a banner company is moving to a federal court. In June, David McCarthy with Community Showcase Banners signed a contract with former Mayor Joe Adame for the sale of light post banners throughout the city.
McCarthy started selling the banners to local businesses but City Attorney Carlos Valdez said the contract was never valid because the mayor doesn't have that kind of authority.
After failed attempts to stop McCarthy from selling the banners, the city filed a lawsuit against him. 250 street banners may not sound like a lot but at $600 a piece, Valdez estimates local businesses spent a total of $150,000 on street banners that were never installed.
Zeke Hinojosa with Denny Bales Diamonds said they lost money in the banner deal. "For us probably close around $5,000," he said, "but I understand there's many other businesses that were involved in lots and lots of money and product and merchandise and so forth."
Representatives with the city say 30 or more companies are out thousands of dollars in advertisements after former Mayor Joe Adame signed the invalid contract in June with the New York-based Company called Community Showcase Banners.
People with the businesses affected said they'd like the banners they paid for to be installed but since that's not likely to happen, they just want their money back.
The owner of the company, Dave McCarthy was supposed to pay the businesses back today in court but instead filed to have the case transferred to a federal court which means Denny Bales Diamonds along with the other companies involved will have to wait.
Now, businesses that do a lot of advertising are leery of future advertisement opportunities.
"Just for everyone to be cautious in what they get involved in," said Hinojosa, "advertising is a great thing but when and how to do it is another and unfortunately this deal didn't work out for us."
Carlos Valdez said it's now up to the city to decide whether to keep the case in federal court or file a motion to transfer it back to Corpus Christi. The city sayd there could be more than 30 companies who lost money in the deal and encourage anyone who did business with Community Showcase Banners to contact the city public information office.
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