Virginia State Bar

An agency of the Supreme Court of Virginia

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Local Government

A Section of the Virginia State Bar.

Section News and Information

August 1, 2019

2019 Local Government Section Annual Report

Eric A. Gregory, Chairman

Membership
As of June 1, 2018, the Local Government Law Section had 720 members, which is an increase from 625 members in September, 2016.

Budget
The budget for fiscal year 2017-2018 was $10,000.  By June 30, 2018, the Section expects to have spent $6,002.68.  As of May 21, 2018, the Section had collected $12,840.00 during the 2017-2018 fiscal year.  Depending on final year-end expenses, the Section expects to have a positive balance of approximately $6,837.32, for fiscal year 2018. 

Journal of Local Government Law
The Board published one issue of the Journal of Local Government Law during 2017-2018 and worked to produce additional issues in 2018-19.  The Fall 2017 issue of the Journalincluded articles on “Searching Employees’ Workstations”, issues of privacy, and applicable Supreme Court cases, by John C. Blair, Deputy County Attorney for Albemarle County; and “The U.S. Supreme Court’s New Standard for Students with Disabilities in Practice”, by Laura A. Ferrugiari and Timothy M. Mahoney, son of longstanding section member Paul Mahoney, former County Attorney for Roanoke County, and published with the permission of the Nassau County Bar Association.  The Journal also included a new “Did you know…?”feature by section member and Board of Governors Secretary Rebecca “Becky” Kubin, which explained that privately-held oyster leases in state-owned waters is a category of property that cannot be condemned by localities.  The new “Did you know…?” column is meant to briefly highlight an obscure or little-known or understood issue of local government law that may be of interest to section members.  All section members are invited to submit articles for consideration. 

The issue also included a report from 2017 Local Government Fellowship Recipient, law student Callie Gibson.  Ms. Gibson reported on her summer experience working with the Henrico County Attorney’s office and expressed her appreciation to the section and Board of Governors for awarding her the fellowship. 

Fellowship Expanded
Several years earlier, the Board of Governors established a fellowship for one or more rising second and third year law students who are summer associates for local government attorneys.  The Board recognized that public employment does not offer the same pay as private employment and saw that as an impediment to local government attorneys being able to attract the best and brightest; at the same time financial pressures on law students inhibit their willingness to experience the practice of local government law.  The fellowship provides funds to support recipients during the summer months while they gain public service experience.    

The Board continued the fellowship during 2017-2018 and budgeted $4,000 for fellowship awards.  The fellowship committee, led by Board Vice-Chair Jan Proctor, worked very hard in assessing a large pool of very qualified candidates.  Ultimately, the fellowship committee recommended, and the Board of Governors approved, awarding two fellowships for the summer of 2018, each in the amount of $2,000, to law students Jessica Lipford, who is splitting her summer between the Henrico and Dinwiddie County Attorneys’ offices, and Sarah Silberman, who will be interning with the Arlington County Attorney’s office.  

New Officers and Members
The Board appointed a nominating committee for the purpose of nominating officers for the Board of Governors and new members for election to the Board of Governors to fill open seats and replace members who are rolling off the Board.   In compliance with the new By-laws adopted last year, the Board enlisted three Section members who were not Board members to serve on the five-member nominating committee.  The result was a strong slate of officers and new members to replace members who are leaving the Board due to term limits.

The committee nominated Jan Proctor to advance to the position of Chair for 2018-19 from her position as Vice-Chair for the 2017-18 year.  Also nominated to advance from her previous position as Secretary was Rebecca Kubin, to serve as Vice-Chair.  Bernadette Peele was nominated for the position of Secretary.  

The terms of Board of Governors members Kevin White, Cynthia Bailey, and Section Chair Eric Gregory, expired.  Members Kevin White and Cynthia Bailey were eligible to serve another term and were so nominated by the committee.  Chair Eric Gregory rolled off the Board due to having already served two terms but will continue as immediate past Chair.  The committee nominated J. Vaden Hunt, County Attorney for Pittsylvania County, to fill the open seat on the Board. 

During the Virginia State Bar’s Annual Meeting, the Local Government Section held its Annual Meeting on June 15, 2018.  Section members present voted and unanimously elected the slate of officers and new member J. Vaden Hunt to the Board of Governors, as recommended by the Nominating Committee.  Therefore, Section officers for 2018-19 are Chair Jan Proctor, Vice-Chair Rebecca Kubin, and Secretary Bernadette Peele.

For the complete 80th Annual Report of the Virginia State Bar, please click here