New year, new attorney for ADICA

ALBANY -- The split between Albany-Dougherty Inner City Authority and Perry & Walters attorney Jay Reynolds is nothing more than a financial issue, according to ADICA Interim Director James Taylor.

ADICA could continue to employ Reynolds if it had the financial resources to pay for legal services.

In October, when Taylor presented an urgent budget request to the city commission to pay off immediate and outstanding debt owed by the authority, the commission agreed to give ADICA $22,000. During that discussion, commissioners asked whether City Attorney Nathan Davis could handle the responsibilities associated with the ADICA attorney position.

"There was never any bitterness or anger associated with moving from Jay (Reynolds) to Nathan (Davis)," Taylor said. "It was just a matter of finances. We didn't have the money to continue paying Perry & Walters and we don't have to pay a nickel for the city attorney."

ADICA accepted the city's offer during its November meeting.

In a letter dated Nov. 13 to the members of the ADICA Board, Reynolds thanked the authority for their years of consideration in choosing him as their attorney, and pledged his continued professional and personal support of their efforts downtown.

"If it develops that at some future time it is determined that ADICA requires special or separate counsel to represent its interest...we would certainly be very pleased to be considered for service in that limited role," Reynolds wrote.

The move to have Davis serve as ADICA counsel is the latest offer made by the city to help the much maligned board in the post-Don Buie era. Following the allegations of financial mismanagement by the former ADICA executive director, the city finance department is keeping ADICA's books.

"The board is under no obligation to use city services, but because there is little in the way of financial support from ADICA to fund its own bookkeeper or attorney, the board has openly welcomed the city's input," Taylor said.

Taylor thanked Reynolds and Perry & Walters for the years of service to the board and their consideration for their fiscal charity in providing reduced legal rates for the board.