deficiencies were manifest in the records submitted in support of the instant application. For these reasons the Court concludes that a reduction of 12 percent from the $59,492.82 total amount of fees and costs claimed, or $7,139.14, is warranted in this instance. Accordingly, the Court approves Gonzalez's supplemental application in an amount of $52,353.68.
B. ATTORNEYS' FEES ON APPEAL
Gonzalez requested an award of attorneys' fees totaling $174,011.50 and $1,949.76 in costs incurred in connection with opposing Defendants' unsuccessful appeal of the judgment rendered pursuant to the Decision. Defendants contest the application as excessive beyond an amount of $111,547.10 in fees and $431.07 in costs. In support of the reduction they urge, Defendants argue that the "lodestar" amount should be lowered because (1) the hourly rates charged by Gonzalez's attorneys are too high; (2) counsel chose to pursue an unsuccessful objection to Defendants' request for an extension of time to perfect their appeal and for reconsideration of the denial of that motion; (3) the hours charged for the services of certain attorneys are excessive; (4) some of the attorneys' charges represent paralegal and clerical tasks that could be performed by non-legal staff; (5) travel time charges should be billed at lower rates; (6) some time billing records are vague and reflect "block billing".
The Court notes that the issues raised by these objections are essentially the same as those Defendants pressed before this Court in connection with Gonzalez's original and supplemental applications for attorneys' fees. Thus, insofar as the same matters were considered and settled previously, the Court applies the same reasoning and authorities to find likewise with regard to the fees disputed here.
For example, the Court has already found that the hourly rates charged by Gonzalez's attorneys, taking into account their experience, expertise, involvement in the case and their successful results, were reasonable in relation to the market for legal services of the type of case in question. See Gonzalez, 147 F. Supp.2d at 211-12. That their rate is modestly higher in this application is of no consequence because of the different time periods entailed: up to 2001 for services related to trial and post-trial proceedings and 2002 with respect to the appeal. In any event, as discussed above, even at the higher amounts the rates are still within the range that has been considered reasonable.
By the same token, the Court finds that the charges at issue in the appeal application merit some reduction for the same reasons that prompted the Court to lower them in connection with the original and supplemental requests already decided. Charges expended opposing Defendants' motion for enlargement of time to perfect their appeal, given the unique difficulties encountered by the City's Corporation Counsel's Office following the events of September 11, 2001, could have been avoided by consent and thus cannot be considered to be related to pursuing the merits of the appeal. In addition, the Court notes that the occasionally general, vague and, at times, duplicative style of billing entries that characterized counsel's time records in connection with the earlier applications also carry over with regard to the instant request, and for the same reasons justify reduction. On the basis of the Court's review of the parties' arguments and related documentation, the Court concludes that a reduction of 12 percent, or $21,115.35, from the total amount of counsel fees and costs of $175,961.26 claimed in connection with Gonzalez's appeal is warranted. The Court thus approves an award of attorneys' fees totaling $154,845.91 with regard to Gonzalez's appeal.
For the reasons discussed above, it is hereby
ORDERED that plaintiff Gloria Gonzalez's supplemental motion for attorneys' fees and costs is granted and an award of $52,353.68 in fees and costs is approved in this regard; and it is further
ORDERED that Gonzales's application for attorneys' fees and costs incurred with respect to Defendants appeal of this Court's Decision in this matter is granted and an award of $154,845.91 in fees and costs is approved in this regard.
The Clerk of Court is directed to close this case.