La Plata County commissioners this week took steps to bring the county's legal services in-house in an effort to control costs.
Sheryl Rogers, who previously worked for the county on a contract basis, has been hired to head the office as the county attorney. Her salary is about $150,000 a year, Human Resources Director Kelli Ganevsky said.
The department will also include a deputy attorney, who will earn between $75,000 and $90,000 a year, and two assistant attorneys, who will make $65,000 to $73,000 a year. An office manager will be hired at $38,000 to $45,000 a year.
"We're hoping this will help streamline our legal services, control our costs," Ganevsky said.
In 2007, the county budgeted $212,000 for county attorney fees but the actual cost was $453,000, according to the 2009 budget. The estimate for 2008 was $647,000.
Applicants have been interviewed for the remaining openings, though they have not yet been filled.
Previously, all the county's legal services were provided on a contract basis by Rogers, the Goldman, Robbins & Nicholson law firm, and others.
Goldman, Robbins & Nicholson will continue to provide services to the county on a limited basis.
Rogers' office is at the Crossroads Building on Main Avenue. It is likely the department will be located there, although the decision is not final.
A research analyst previously under public works will move to the new legal department.