In other business Tuesday, council approved a second and final reading to amend Chapter 6 of Statesboro’s Code of Ordinances, regarding alcoholic beverages.
The updated ordinance permits Sunday sales of alcoholic beverages throughout the city between the hours of noon and 11 p.m. beginning this Sunday.
Statesboro City Council reached an agreement Tuesday to offer a vacated city attorney position to one of two final candidates for the job.
J. Alvin Leaphart IV accepted an opportunity to become legal counselor for the City of Statesboro when offered the job over phone shortly after council’s scheduled morning meeting, according to Jeff Grant, Director of Human Resources.
Leaphart, who for the previous eleven years operated The Leaphart Law Firm, LLC in Conyers and Statesboro (since 2010), will fill the void created by former City Attorney Sam Brannen’s death in January and the departure of staff attorney Michael Graves in September. He will earn an annual salary of $72,000 and be tasked with providing city staff with legal services and advice relating to litigation activities, contracts and other legal issues, said Grant.
“I am very happy and excited to have the job. I look forward to doing everything I can to serve the City of Statesboro,” Leaphart said. “I look forward to working with everyone there.”
“I have worked as a public servant before and enjoyed the work,” he said. “I saw this as an opportunity to get back into public service. That is what attracted me to the job.”
The city’s newest employee has practiced law since 1999 as a law clerk for the State Bar of Georgia and Superior Court of Rockdale County. In 2001, Leaphart established a private firm with a focus on criminal and traffic charges, serious injuries, contested domestic matters and bankruptcy.
He received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and professional law doctorate at Atlanta’s Georgia State University.
“Mr. Leaphart was chosen as a top candidate by our selection committee. He exhibited the characteristics of a city attorney that we all envisioned Statesboro needed,” said Councilman Travis Chance. “He has a great background in law and will be a very welcome addition to our staff both professionally and personally.”
Leaphart was selected from a group of candidates that were evaluated by a selection committee including Grant, City Manager Frank Parker, Mayor Joe Brannen and other city staff.
“We had several good candidates. But it was clear Leaphart wanted to stay a part of Statesboro, make this his home and keep this his home,” said Councilman Will Britt. “He is a very bright individual, and he is going to fit our legal needs very well. We are looking forward to him coming onboard and being our guy.”
According to Grant, Leaphart will begin work in his new position next week.
Jeff Harrison can be reached at (912) 489-9454.