City Attorney

The mission of the Legal Department is to provide high quality legal services to facilitate policy making by the City Council and City Manager, to ensure the legality of the City's actions, to promote compliance with City regulations, to manage the City's real property interests, to represent the City's interests in litigation and legislative matters, and to provide staffing for the Ethics Review and Charter Review Commissions.

Role of the City Attorney's Office

  • Provide legal advice to the City Council, to boards and commissions, and to City staff members on municipal issues including economic development laws, ordinance drafting and enforcement, civil liability, open government laws, criminal law, employment law, procurement law, real estate law, annexation law, land use/development law, and public utility law. The City Attorney's Office does not provide legal advice or representation to the public but is available to explain city ordinances and processes in response to questions from citizens.
  • Prepare City Council agenda worksheets to track materials for meetings, and draft and review ordinances and resolutions for City Council action.
  • Draft and review contracts, including procurement contracts, interlocal agreements, grant contracts, construction contracts, and professional services contracts.
  • Manage real property interests of the City, including acquisitions and dispositions of property, easements, rights-of-way, leases, franchises and licenses.
  • Represent the City's interests in lawsuits and administrative proceedings, including water rights matters, collection actions, and tort and contract claims involving the City. When necessary, the Legal Department coordinates with the outside counsel to ensure effective representation of the City's interests.
  • Provide staffing to the Ethics Review Commission, the Charter Review Commission, and the San Marcos Industrial Development Corporation Board of Directors.
  • Support the law and ordinance enforcement efforts of other City departments through day-to-day advice, Municipal Court prosecution, prosecution of appeals in the County Courts-at-Law, injunction suits, and the filing of liens related to code enforcement.