Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Board Appoints Saladino County Counsel on 4-1 Vote
By a MetNews Staff Writer
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors yesterday named county Treasurer/Tax Collector Mark J. Saladino county counsel, effective Oct. 15.
The vote was 4-1, with Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas the lone dissenter.
Chief Executive Officer William Fujioka urged the board to appoint Saladino based on his “extensive legal experience.” He will receive a salary of $288,915 per year, the same as John Krattli was receiving when he retired in July.
Saladino could not be reached for comment.
Nedra Jenkins, chief of staff to Ridley-Thomas, told the MetNews the supervisor opposed the appointment for a number of reasons, including the lack of a competitive search process or the setting of a list of minimum qualifications for the board.
MARK J. SALADINO
She noted that Saladino hadn’t practiced law since being appointed to his present post in 1998. State Bar records show that he took inactive status in 2002 and returned to active status on June 27 of this year, eight days after Krattli made public his plans to retire.
It is conceivable, Jenkins said, that Saladino would not have met the minimum qualifications in effect before Krattli was appointed three years ago. The supervisor was also concerned that Saladino’s legal experience was heavily concentrated in the public finance field at a time that law enforcement and social service issues are becoming a major part of the office’s work.
The board, Jenkins said, appeared to be in an unseemly rush to fill a number of major posts, now including Saladino’s, before termed-out supervisors Zev Yaroslavsky and Gloria Molina leave office in December.
At the time of Saladino’s appointment to his present position, he was a principal deputy county counsel, having joined the office in 1990.
His work in the office included finance and investment matters for the county and subordinate public agencies. From 1982 to 1990, he was at Hawkins, Delafield & Wood in New York City and at Jones Day Reavis & Pogue in Los Angeles, practicing in the fields of public finance, corporate finance and securities, bank lending, real estate, taxation and other transactional matters for public and private clients.
Saladino is a 1979 graduate of the University of Illinois, where he majored in investment and banking. He obtained his law degree from New York University in 1982 and is admitted to practice law in New York, California and the District of Columbia.
He has been actively involved in drafting legislation on public finance and investment and has held a number of offices in the California Association of County Treasurers and Tax Collectors.
Saladino has been a member of the State Bar of California since 1985.
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