Montgomery-based attorney hired by Selma City Council

Published 7:48 pm Tuesday, January 8, 2019

A Montgomery-based attorney was hired to represent the Selma City Council in legal matters on Tuesday at City Hall.

Bobby Segall was introduced at the city council meeting after the members voted to hire him on a retainer. Councilman John Leashore was the only one who didn’t vote for the hire. Segall works for the law firm Copeland-Franco in Montgomery and quickly pointed out his duties for the nine-member council.

“I’m not a city attorney, I’m hired to represent the city council and be available to them whenever they have legal issues,” Segall said. “I’ll do the best job I can for the city council for matters they hired me to do.”

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The timing is perfect for the hiring of Segall. The city council will be in court at 11 a.m. on Monday morning at the Dallas County Courthouse in a lawsuit against Mayor Darrio Melton over the appointment powers for the police chief, fire chief and tax collector. Melton filed the lawsuit on Oct. 11, 2018 after the council passed an ordinance on Sept. 25.

Jimmy Nunn served as the city attorney from 2000-2018 under three different Mayors: Rev. James Perkins, George Evans and Darrio Melton. He will be sworn in as the Dallas County Probate Judge on Saturday at Wallace Community College-Selma.

Councilwoman Miah Jackson said she’d like for Segall assist the council get access to the city’s financial records.

“Hopefully he can help us receive financial data,” Jackson said. “The council and citizens of Selma have a right to know what the finances are. This has gone too far.”

Jackson also said she and Council President Corey Bowie will attempt to bring a Certified Public Account (CPA) of Selma before the council to discuss the city’s financial status.

Bowie said he plans to get a financial analysis of how much the city is having with the 68 employees who were laid off on Nov. 5. He also called the city’s “cash cow” period between October and January, which the sales tax, ad valorem tax and business license fees all come into play.

The council approved Selma Fire Department (SFD) chief Toney Stevens to hire three fire investigators and nine part-time firefighters at $14 per hour and for overtime.

The council reminded residents there’s a trash ordinance, where items like mattresses and sofas won’t get picked up by garbage workers.