The hotel has sued the SRLC and its signatory, South Carolina political operative Robert C. Cahaly over the money dispute. The Charleston City Paper wrote a long feature about the issue.
In its federal complaint, the hotel says in March it originally entered into an agreement for the booking which ran from Thurs. Jan. 19 through Sun. Jan. 22. South Carolina political operative Robert C. Cahaly, who is named as co-defendant in the lawsuit, served as the group's signatory. The contract was amended on Dec. 20, 2011.
In the complaint filed in the Charleston County Court of Common Pleas, the hotel says it has come to believe that the SRLC "was grossly undercapitalized, failed to observe corporate formalities, was insolvent, and was mere[ly] used as a façade for the operations of the defendant Cahaly." In addition it says, "Cahaly, an individual businessman, has sought to hide from the normal consequences of carefree entrepenuring by doing so through a corporate shell.
"Due to their incompetence, the defendants failed to properly plan or manage the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, and it was poorly attended," the hotel says. "The conference was so poorly attended as to cause one Republican candidate, Newt Gingrich, to cancel his appearance.
"Poor attendance caused many of the conference sponsors to leave the conference," it continues. "Poor attendance left the defendants responsible for a significant payment to the plaintiff under the terms of the contract."
The article continues by saying, "at 3:01 p.m., the time when the defendants were due to check out of the hotel, the defendants emailed [hotel] management and cancelled the meeting at which they were supposed to settle the bill." In the email, the SRLC allegedly accused the hotel of difficulties with refunds or adjustments, poor overall treatment and a hotel manager instructing an SRLC staffer to engage in illegal activity, according to the City Paper article.
Sounds more like bitterness over the poor attendance of their conference than mismanagement by the hotel.