Last Thursday the Chemung County Legislature approved a Resolution by a vote of 13-1 authorizing it to bring an action in New York Supreme Court to affirm its right to appoint a Legislative Attorney. The Resolution included the authority to hire outside counsel if necessary.

A copy of the Minutes where this matter was decided is found here, a video of the Committee Meeting where it was thoroughly discussed is found here, and a blog post outlining my thoughts on the legal issues is found here.

The Legislature passed a second Resolution Thursday by a vote of 14-0 affirming its power to appoint an attorney, and, among other things, ordering all Chemung County employees and departments to refrain from engaging in any acts that would interfere with our current attorney’s ability to carry out his duties.

A copy of the Resolution is found here and is embedded below:

However, the Legislature was informed last evening that our attorney’s email account has been deactivated, cutting off his ability to send and receive messages – an act that clearly affects our attorney’s ability to carry out his duties. I don’t know how or why this occurred.

Although I, and I believe many members of the Legislature, have no interest in engaging in a dispute like this as there are far greater issues in our community that demand our attention, it’s unfortunately possible we may have no other choice.

To that end, we will be considering a resolution at the Legislature’s Budget Committee Meeting on Monday night to engage the legal services of Ray Schlather, a partner in the firm of Schlather, Stumbar, Parks and Salk.

Attorney Schlather has offered to represent the Legislature pro bono, i.e. for free, and the Legislature is exempt from any court filing fees. In other words, the engagement of Attorney Schlather would not cost the taxpayers any money at all.

Information about Attorney Schlather can be found here:

A copy of the Budget Committee’s Agenda is found here, and a copy of the resolution is embedded below:

My hope is that we can end this disagreement as soon as possible and get back to doing the work that matters for our community.

Christina Sonsire