Town hires new law firm after Canton attorney resigns
By ADAM ATKINSON
CANTON -- The town has officially signed a contract with the law firm Pease and Gustafson LLP of Massena to provide regular legal services to the municipality in the wake of the resignation of long-time Canton town attorney Charles B. Nash in February.
The board authorized Town Supervisor Mary Ann Ashley to sign a contract with the firm at the town board meeting Wednesday, April 10.Last month the board authorized Ashley to negotiate a contract with Eric Gustafson, one of the principals of the legal firm. Pease and Gustafson was one of three applicants who applied for the position vacated by Nash.
The firm will provide the town with regular municipal legal services to the town, and Eric Gustafson or his associates will attend the regular town board meetings to provide counsel and advice on all town legal matters the board may consider.
The law firm will be paid the retainer of $150 an hour when working for Canton, in addition to fees and expenses incurred during execution of legal work on the town’s behalf.
Pease and Gustafson have experience in municipal law, providing several other towns in the county besides Canton with regular legal services.
Previously Nash and other attorneys before him served the town as an employee, earning a town salary. Pease and Gustafson will serve the town under contract.
Upon signing the contract, Ashley introduced Gustafson to the board.
“You’ve got bit of an agenda and I’m not going to take up a lot of time speaking, I just want to say that every time we get an opportunity to (represent) a government it’s a real honor, and I’m honored to be here. . . I will make sure you are well represented,” said Gustafson.