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Birmingham: judge rules that councilwoman is legally holding office

The Birmingham News reports: A Jefferson County Judge this afternoon dismissed a lawsuit claiming Birmingham City Councilwoman Valerie Abbott was serving illegally because she works for a utility.

In his lawsuit filed in October 2009, Paul Latino asked the judge to remove Abbott from office and reimburse him for any taxes he paid that went toward her salary. At issue was Abbott's full-time job at AT&T. Latino's lawyers said her employment with the utility violates portions of the Mayor/Council Act and the Alabama Code.

In addition, the suit cited a section in the State Code as well as Section 8.06 of the Mayor Council Act, which prohibits a council member from working for a utility while in office. ...

Abbott called criticism about her employment misguided. Although she works at AT&T, she officially works for BellSouth Affiliate Services Corp., a spin-off company from the utility that does not provide phone service or is a regulated utility. In his ruling, Judge William Noble agreed with Abbott's defense . -- Read the whole story --> Jefferson County judge tosses suit arguing Birmingham Councilwoman Valerie Abbott serves illegally | al.com

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