Temple City Selects Vail, His Firm as City Attorney

Successor to Martin found, interim city attorney to assume post.

Written by RANDY SHUN / Published May 14, 2010

Interim City Attorney Eric Vail was chosen as Temple City’s permanent city attorney, the mayor announced Tuesday evening.

Vail has served as the acting city attorney since June, when then-City Attorney Charles R. Martin retired. Last month, Vail confirmed that he and his legal firm – Burke, Williams, and Sorensen, LLC – were interested in permanently occupying the post.

Mayor Fernando Vizcarra made the declaration near the end of the December 1, 2009 city council meeting.

“We have selected Burke, Williams, and Sorensen to remain as our City Attorney,” the mayor said.

Final interviews with three legal firms were conducted in late November. The City Council selected Burke, Williams, and Sorensen in part because of Vail, Vizcarra noted.

The ideal candidate was someone with a development background or redevelopment experience.

“The focus is going to be development and redevelopment and somebody that has experience with a city our size or bigger,” Vizcarra previously said.

In May, the City Council, excluding Councilwoman Cynthia Sternquist who then was not on the City Council, fired long-time city employee Charles R. Martin. Martin had served in dual roles, as Temple City’s city manager and city attorney.

After the announcement was made, the newly chosen city attorney thanked city officials for the opportunity.

“On behalf of our firm, it is our pleasure to be your city attorney,” Vail said.

For now, Vail will continue to serve as interim city attorney until a contract is drawn. A second attorney from his firm will act as the assistant city attorney for planning commission meetings.

City officials do not plan to disclose Vail’s salary until early next year when a contract is drawn.

Vail, a graduate of McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, is married and has three children.

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