Share This Page

Search on for Butler County solicitor

| Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012, 9:00 p.m.

Butler County commissioners are searching for a solicitor to replace Julie Graham, whose last day in office is Dec. 31.

Commissioners last week voted 2-1 to form a committee to find a successor. Four people had applied for the job as of Tuesday.

Graham's official retirement date is Feb. 8 because she has vacation days to use.

The solicitor advises commissioners and other government officials on legal matters, and often handles or helps with contract negotiations.

Commissioner James Eckstein, the lone Democrat on the three-commissioner board, complained that he wasn't represented on the committee, and that someone with a legal background should be on it.

He asked commissioners Bill McCarrier and A. Dale Pinkerton to allow his administrative assistant, Margaret Abersold, who is a lawyer, to be on the committee, but McCarrier said no.

McCarrier and Pinkerton, both Republicans, voted to appoint Graham, chief clerk Amy Wilson, retired chief clerk Bill O'Donnell and county personnel director Lori Altman to the committee.

Eckstein said Altman wouldn't represent his views because, “She's suing me in court.”

Altman, her husband, state police Trooper Scott Altman and Pinkerton sued Eckstein for defamation, saying that he spread a false story that Pinkerton gave Lori Altman a raise because her husband intervened in a drunken driving incident with Pinkerton. State police said no incident ever happened.

McCarrier said O'Donnell, a Democrat, would be a good representative for Eckstein's party, and that the committee would represent all three commissioners.

McCarrier said Eckstein will be permitted to attend the meetings, but said that he couldn't speak during them unless the committee allowed him to do so.

The committee will choose a candidate and forward the name to commissioners for a vote.

Bill Vidonic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5621 or bvidonic@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.