Decatur Superintendent dials down presence of School Board attorney

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt March 24, 2016
City Schools of Decatur Attorney Bob Wilson. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

City Schools of Decatur Attorney Bob Wilson. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

For years attorney Bob Wilson or another member of his firm have been a fixture at Decatur School Board meetings.

Wilson, who has earned $2.6 million as City Schools of Decatur Attorney since 2002, has been CSD’s attorney for over 17 years. Wilson’s firm, Wilson, Morton & Downs, also represents the city of Decatur and the city of Avondale Estates.

He’s been known to weigh in on issues during meetings if the board asks him for his opinion.

But Decatur’s new Superintendent David Dude said he didn’t think that should continue.

“I don’t think it’s appropriate to ask your attorney for legal advice in a live public meeting,” Dude said. “I think it really puts your attorney on the spot, providing opinions on things they might need to research. I didn’t think it was a wise decision.”

He also thought it was wasting Wilson’s time. Dude said Wilson’s fee of $185 an hour was a secondary concern. Wilson normally charges $450 to $500 per hour, Dude said.

He said Wilson didn’t object to the change.

“Bob’s OK with that,” Dude said. “Bob’s absolutely fine with it. He wants to do whatever the school district needs him to do. He doesn’t have any issues with it.”

Decaturish reached out to Wilson for a comment and will update this story if he responds.

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