Concerns arise over legality of county attorney contract

Concerns have arisen over the legality of Archuleta County’s contract for legal services with Rose Walker Starr LLP, a local law firm.

Archuleta County contracted with the law firm for legal services following the resignation of Todd Starr, who had served as county attorney since 2009, on Sept. 21.

Starr resigned from his full-time post at the county to join the Texas law firm as a partner, with the firm’s Colorado operations gaining Starr’s name and Starr serving as managing partner for the Pagosa Springs office.

On Sept. 22, the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners held an executive session to discuss Starr’s resignation, and emerged stating that they planned to look into contracting with Starr and his firm for legal services.

On several different days following the executive session, commissioners stated that Starr would still work for the county.

On Oct. 6, the BoCC voted to contract with the law firm for legal services.

According to the new agreement in place, the firm will represent the county in “general legal matters as requested by the board from time to time.”

But now questions are surfacing among citizens over the legality of the contract, particularly if it violates a state statute relating to interests in contracts, and if how the contract came to be violates Colorado’s Sunshine Laws.

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This story was posted on November 5, 2015.