The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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January 15, 2014

Officials will research options for replacing city attorney


Should Clinton choose contracted services, its work won’t be finished though. Kinser said the council would have to re-word its Code of Ordinances to evaluate what duties firms would fulfill. One example she brought up was the fact that Farwell also performed human resources tasks, something the city won’t likely find through a service contract.

The code also states Clinton’s attorney must be a resident of the city, which eliminates groups that specialize in this type of counsel (O’Connell’s among them).

The discussion also revealed that Clinton’s most comparable cities don’t employ full-time attorneys.

Kinser was directed to continue to research and to present the council with what an RFP might look like, cost estimates and an evaluation of city attorney duties. The council didn’t rule out either option.

Determann unsettled by audit delay

Councilmembers continued the strategic plan discussion, Tuesday, where Kinser presented a draft of what the council said it hoped to achieve, Jan. 8. The conversation, again, found its way to the status of Clinton’s financial reports, and the city administrator explained the results of the city’s audit won’t be known for some time.

Kinser said the city was behind on its audit, citing the lengthy process of compiling the data and learning curve from working with a new firm. Those results won’t be available until near March, after the city’s budget deadline.

New councilman Tom Determann said with finality that will “never” happen again.

“I think what we’re trying to say is that’s unacceptable,” Determann said. “We won’t be accepting it again.”

He said he’s remembered worked with the city during past audits, and that there was an “uncooperation of staff.”

“It has happened,” Determann said. “We have high expectations and they will be met.”

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