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Redevelopment authority attorney replaced

Bagwell takes over for dismissed Syfan

POSTED: March 20, 2009 11:39 p.m.

Emily Bagwell was chosen as new attorney for the Gainesville-Hall County Redevelopment Authority at its Friday meeting.

Bagwell and her firm, Whelchel, Dunlap, Jarrard and Walker, will serve as legal counsel for the authority following Tread Syfan’s departure from the position.

Bagwell’s areas of practice include business law and commercial law, health care, employment relations and government relations.

She is named in The Bond Buyer’s Municipal Marketplace, also known as the “Red Book.”

Syfan was removed from the post following the revelation that he was part of a group purchasing the Regions Bank building in downtown Gainesville.

“We look forward to working with Whelchel, Dunlap, (Jarrard and Walker). It’s an outstanding firm with a great history and tradition in Gainesville,” Chairman Dan Summer said.

In a late February letter, City Manager Kip Padgett dismissed Syfan as the Redevelopment Authority’s attorney.

“As you are aware, your recent actions/involvement with the former Town View Center site has caused the Council tremendous concern,” Padgett wrote. “It is with this issue in mind that Council has instructed me to inform you that the services of Stewart, Melvin and Frost are no longer needed as attorneys for the Redevelopment Authority.”

Syfan told the board in January that he was involved first as counsel and then became an investor in City View Investments LLC, a corporation that includes Hall County Commission Chairman Tom Oliver and Commissioner Billy Powell as owners, along with Syfan.

City View Investments has an offer pending to purchase the Regions Bank Operations Center in the former Town View Plaza. The transaction is tied up in litigation filed by Regions Financial Corp. against Gainesville City Center over driveway easements.

The two properties are adjoining, and Regions previously had access to Bradford Street via the parking lot of Town View Plaza.



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