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Legislators reject part-time job for retiring assistant prosecutor

The Niagara County Legislature refused Tuesday to keep First Assistant District Attorney Timothy R. Lundquist on the payroll as a part-timer after he retires July 1.

Legislators changed the proposed resolution to deny Lundquist the county job requested by the outgoing and incoming district attorneys.

They voted, 14-5, to offer Lundquist $40 an hour as a private attorney under an arrangement limited to one year.

"I don't believe this is the time to be hiring new people," said Legislator W. Keith McNall, R-Lockport, who proposed the amendment.

Lundquist would have been paid $28,538 to $32,740 for 913.5 hours of work each year. At $40 an hour, he would be limited to 700 hours.

"I don't think he would go for it," Second Assistant District Attorney Holly E. Sloma told the Legislature.

District Attorney Matthew J. Murphy III, a Democrat, and Michael J. Violante, a Republican who is so far unopposed for district attorney in this fall's election, both told Legislature committees earlier this month they wanted to use Lundquist not as a trial lawyer but as a mentor for younger prosecutors and as a crime scene adviser to police, which would require him to be on call 24 hours a day.

Majority Leader Richard E. Updegrove, R-Lockport, said change will produce more accountability on how Lundquist spends his time.

e-mail: tprohaska@buffnews.com

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