Provides professional legal representation for the City of Des Moines; performs directly related work as required.
DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE CLASS:
The principal function of an employee in this class is to provide professional legal advice and to ensure professional representation in representing the City Council, City Departments and employees in complex litigation and transactions. The work is performed under the direct supervision of the Deputy City Attorney and City Attorney but considerable leeway is granted for the exercise of independent judgement and initiative. This class is distinguished from the class of Assistant City Attorney I by trying difficult cases and providing legal advice to other City Attorneys. Supervision may be exercised over the work of legal support staff. The nature of the work performed requires that an employee in this class establishes and maintains effective working relationships with other City employees, court officials, law enforcement officials, legal professionals, business and community organizations and the public. The principal duties of this class are performed in a general office environment.
EXAMPLES OF ESSENTIAL WORK (ILLUSTRATIVE ONLY):
• Conducts litigation in State and Federal District court on complex tort and related cases, including appeals through the United States Supreme Court; • Provides advice to other Attorneys on trial strategy, evaluation of potential settlements and ideas related to preparation of cases; • Prepares complex contracts and related legal documents for City Departments; • Provides legal advice, counsel and course of action recommendations to City Departments in various areas, including Police, Community Development or related areas of substantial municipal responsibility; • Represents the City in pre-trial conferences, including research and negotiation with all parties involved; • Prepares cases for trial, examining law and evidence subject to review and assistance by a supervisor; • Prepares and interviews witnesses presenting evidence for the City to ascertain that evidence is complete and will be well presented; • Performs special projects for the City Attorney as requested; • Represents City employees, boards and commissions; • Represents the City before state and federal administration agencies, boards and commissions; • Studies and keeps current knowledge of City, State, Federal and general municipal law for information and precedents bearing on City legal problems; • Researches legal opinions, memoranda and data for the guidance of City Departments; • Researches, prepares, and compiles proposed ordinances and resolutions and proposed amendments to existing ordinances; • Provides needed information and demonstrations concerning how to perform certain work tasks to new employees in the same or similar class of positions; • Keeps immediate supervisor and designated others fully and accurately informed concerning work progress, including present and potential work problems and suggestions for new or improved ways of addressing such problems; • Attends meetings, conferences, workshops and training sessions and reviews publications and audio-visual materials to become and remain current on the principles, practices and new developments in assigned work areas; • Responds to citizens’ questions and comments in a courteous and timely manner; • Communicates and coordinates regularly with appropriate others to maximize the effectiveness and efficiency of interdepartmental operations and activities; • Performs other directly related duties consistent with the role and function of the classification.
REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES:
• Comprehensive knowledge of civil law; • Some knowledge of criminal law; • Comprehensive knowledge of the principles, practices, methods, materials and references utilized in legal research; • Thorough knowledge of legal practices and procedures; • Thorough knowledge of municipal law, torts, contracts, civil rights, administrative processes and real property; • Thorough knowledge of appellate practices and procedures; • Thorough knowledge of State and Federal statutes and regulations pertaining to municipal governments; • Ability to use technology to research and present cases; • Ability in negotiations and in persuasion of others, including both individuals and groups; • Ability in presentations of both routine and complex issues; • Ability to communicate effectively with others, both orally and in writing, using both technical and non-technical language; • Ability to understand and follow oral and/or written policies, procedures and instructions; • Ability to prepare and present accurate and reliable reports containing findings and recommendations; • Ability to operate a personal computer using standard or customized software applications appropriate to assigned tasks; • Ability to use logical and creative thought processes to develop solutions according to written specifications and/or oral instructions; • Ability to perform a wide variety of duties and responsibilities with accuracy and speed under the pressure of time-sensitive deadlines; • Ability and willingness to quickly learn and put to use new skills and knowledge brought about by rapidly changing information and/or technology; • Integrity, ingenuity and inventiveness in the performance of assigned tasks.
ACCEPTABLE EXPERIENCE AND TRAINING:
• Graduation from an accredited college or university with a Juris Doctorate degree; and • Considerable legal experience.
REQUIRED SPECIAL QUALIFICATIONS:
• Candidates for positions in this class must pass a post-employment offer, physical examination and drug screen; • Possession of a valid Iowa driver’s license or evidence of equivalent mobility; • Admission to the State Bar.
ESSENTIAL PHYSICAL ABILITIES:
• Sufficient clarity of speech and hearing or other communication capabilities, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to communicate effectively; • Sufficient vision or other powers of observation, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to observe a wide variety of written material in both electronic and hard copy form; • Sufficient manual dexterity with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to operate a personal computer and related equipment; • Sufficient personal mobility and physical reflexes, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to have access within both the general office environment and to all applicable areas of the court system.
The City of Des Moines is Iowa’s capital city and the county seat of Polk County. The local government serves more than 217,000 residents throughout 52 neighborhoods with more than 4,000 acres of parkland and 88 miles of trails. The City of Des Moines stands to be a financially strong city with exceptional city services, fostering an involved community in a customer friendly atmosphere.
Des Moines is the core of one of the fastest growing metro areas (DSM USA) in the Midwest and is beaming with community pride and accolades.