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Saturday, February 22, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Former Spokane city attorney will continue city labor work

From staff reports

A former city attorney involved in the City Hall controversy regarding the firing of Spokane police Chief Frank Straub will remain working for the city on a temporary basis, after the Spokane Ethics Commission approved of the work this week.

Erin Jacobson left the city earlier this month for a job with the employment and labor relations firm, Archbright. Jacobson worked at the city for six years as its chief labor attorney.

Jacobson had been told of alleged abusive behavior from Straub 16 months before Mayor David Condon forced Straub from City Hall in September.

City Administrator Theresa Sanders asked the ethics board to approve a three- to six-month contract for Jacobson to work on the ongoing labor negotiations with Local 270 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, which represents about half of city employees.

“It’s a complex bargaining contract,” Sanders told the commission about Local 270’s contract. “We’re probably about halfway through.”

The city’s ethics code prohibits some activities for former city employees, and Sanders sought an advisory opinion from the commission on Jacobson’s contract.

“If we’re unable to retain Erin, we would bring somebody in on contract from some other firm,” Sanders said.

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