CEO 85-49 -- July 11, 1985
APPLICABILITY OF DISCLOSURE LAW TO ASSISTANT CITY ATTORNEY
To: Mr. John M. Wynn, Assistant City Attorney, City of Coral Springs
An assistant city attorney who prosecutes municipal ordinance violations and who participates in litigation for the city is not a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing statements of financial interests under Section 112.3145, Florida Statutes, although the city attorney must file financial disclosure. CEO 79-42 is referenced.
Are you, an assistant city attorney who prosecutes municipal ordinance violations and who participates in litigation for the city, a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing statements of financial interests annually?
Your question is answered in the negative.
In your letter of inquiry you advise that you are an associate attorney with a private law firm, the named shareholder of which is the City Attorney for the City of Coral Springs. As an associate of the firm, you are hired, supervised, and paid by the firm.
You also advise that the firm does extensive work for the City, representing the City in litigation as well as in other matters. In particular, you serve as the prosecuting attorney for the City in municipal ordinance violation proceedings as an "assistant city attorney." You also represent yourself as an "assistant city attorney" during the course of any litigation in which you participate for the City.
Those persons who are "local officers" subject to the requirement of filing financial disclosure include "any person holding one or more of the following positions: . . . county or municipal attorney . . . ." Section 112.3145(1)(a)3, Florida Statutes (1983). The disclosure law previously included the category of "county or city attorney." Section 112.3145(1)(a)3, Florida Statutes (1981). We believe the change in the law from "city attorney" to "municipal attorney" was intended to include town attorneys as well as city attorneys, rather than to include anyone who provides legal services to a municipality.
Therefore, as you serve as an assistant city attorney rather than as the city attorney, you are not included within those "local officers" who are subject to filing financial disclosure. In addition, we note that in CEO 79-42 we advised that a city prosecutor responsible for prosecuting violations of municipal ordinances was not a "local officer."
Accordingly, we find that as an assistant city attorney you are not a "local officer" subject to the requirement of filing a statement of financial interests annually under Section 112.3145, Florida Statutes.