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Chemung County Legislature will work with County Executive before going to court

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The Chemung County Legislative Budget Committee decided to table a decision on whether they would hire a pro bono attorney to represent the legislature in a case against the Chemung County Executive, on Monday night.

Dave Manchester, Chairman of the Chemung County Legislature, said he will be sitting down with  County Executive Christopher Moss to try to find common ground, rather than take the issue to court.

“There has been talks with the County Executive, which indicates he may have changed his mind on some of the interpretations,” Manchester said. “The Count Executive had asked for the right to retain council. By tabling this, no one will hire council and it puts us into a negotiation form of discussion at this point.”

This comes after Moss fired Bryan Maggs, appointed attorney to the legislature. Moss previously cited “conflicts of interest and ethical issues” in Maggs’ conduct and decision making as causes for concern, specifically how county taxpayers have paid for legal work conducted by a firm of which Maggs is a partner.

Ray Schlather, an attorney based out of Ithaca, offered to represent the Legislature in a pro bono case. 

John Burin, Vice Chairman of the Chemung County Legislature, said he hopes this will send a message to Moss that the legislature wants to be at the table and work in the best inertest of the tax payers.

To avoid a similar situation in the future, the legislature passed a resolution to adopt a local law that would further state that the legislature has the power to appoint an attorney.

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