After two hours of interviews and discussion county commissioners narrowed their search for a new attorney down to two firms.
Nabors, Giblin and Nickerson as well as Ausley and McMullen (the county’s current firm) made the cut from the four firms interviewed by the commission.
Originally there had been five law firms that applied for the position. The Thornton Williams firm dropped out, and the Bryant, Miller and Olive firm and the Messer Caparello firm did not make the final cut.
All of the commissioners during the discussion agreed that the four choices were qualified firms.
Among the several topics discussed after the interviews were the need for timely information back from the attorneys and possible conflicts.
Commissioner Gene Morgan had asked that the commission choose the top two firms and bring the issue up at the next meeting for a final vote.
He also stated that the current firm, Ausley and McMullen, had charged the county $128,000 last year.
The top two firms were very close in their bidding proposals.
Chairman Eric Hinson said he was concerned that the new firm did not charge for reading emails.
Commissioner Sherrie Taylor wanted to be sure, she said, that the chosen firm was one that could help the county.
Commissioner Brenda Holt stated she was looking for a firm that could be aggressive, giving commissioners more information concerning issues that came before them.
Holt spoke about wanting to have a firm that could help the county look for grants and was aware of what was happening in the Florida Legislature.
Commissioner Doug Croley asked that the commissioners look for a firm that would be able to work with the Gadsden Hospital Board.
Each commissioner voted on their top two law firms with the final two candidates garnering the most votes.