Ouray County attorney took job before public decision

Ouray County Plaindealer: Ouray County’s new attorney received an offer letter, accepted the job and signed an employment contract before the Board of County Commissioners voted in public to hire him, according to emails obtained by the Plaindealer through an open records request.

Commissioners voted Sept. 14 to hire Leo Caselli after a nearly nine-month search to replace Carol Viner, who announced her resignation in January.

“Let us review and discuss the possibilities that are in front of us for the first time at this point,” Commission Chairman Ben Tisdel said at the meeting. The commissioners did not discuss other possibilities. He said twice they were considering the action “for the first time,” after receiving questions from the Plaindealer about making the decision to hire Caselli during an executive session. Colorado open meetings laws do not allow elected officials to make decisions behind closed doors.

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