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KFOX14 Investigates: Records show city paid city attorney’s sister more than $840,000

KFOX14 Investigates: Records show city paid city attorney’s sister more than $840,000

That's almost $1 million dollars that the city has paid the outgoing city attorney's sister for legal work.

The documents obtained by KFOX14 Investigates are raising questions about a possible conflict of interest.

As the city attorney, Sylvia Borunda Firth, stands to collect a $250,000 severance package, we’re learning her sister has been paid much more than that over the years.

The records from the city show the city paid Chris Borunda more than $840,000 between January 2011 and May 2018.

The city attorney's office has used her firm -- Ray, McChristian & Jeans -- numerous times for legal services.

As KFOX14 Investigates reported last week, the fact that Firth had hired her sister and her sister's firm was an issue brought up by council members during Firth's performance evaluation in December 2017.

A portion of the payments came from insurance claims in which the insurance company picked the law firm used.

But the city has hired Borunda individually, or her firm for about a dozen cases.

Notably, she's been paid more than $220,000 for collective bargaining negotiations between the city and the fire and police unions.

She was also paid $10,000 in the Three Legged Monkey case, in which the city bought the shopping mall where the bar is located.

Neighbors had complained for years about the bar and its patrons.

KFOX14 Investigates went to City Hall on Tuesday to get answers and asked city representatives about the payments made to Firth’s sister.

A few of them told us they can't speak about the issue because of the separation agreement with Firth, which prohibits them from discussing her employment with the media.

We also tried to contact Chris Borunda and have not yet received a response.

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