My 12 years of service as civil deputy prosecuting attorney in San Juan County gives me a certain perspective on the upcoming election for prosecuting attorney. There are key questions voters should ask when deciding who should be prosecuting attorney.
1. Does the candidate have enough experience to execute the responsibilities of the job? The job of prosecuting attorney involves criminal misdemeanors and felony cases and a wide spectrum of areas that constitute municipal law. This includes the representation of the assessor, auditor, sheriff and treasurer as well as all county departments ranging from Health and Community Services to Public Works and the Land Bank. The prosecutor is responsible for complex issues regarding the adoption and defense of land use regulations. He must be knowledgeable in all these areas in order to give effective representation.
The prosecutor supervises four attorneys and seven support staff including victim services. The office budget is over a million dollars.
Randy Gaylord has been an attorney for over 30 years and has successfully run the office for 24. He has expertise in all the many areas of law required to be prosecuting attorney. Nick Power has five years of experience as a practicing attorney; all of it as a solo practitioner in Friday Harbor.
2. Can the candidate unequivocally advocate for San Juan County as its elected attorney? Power is currently representing seven clients with lawsuits or claims against the county totaling $12 million. This creates a morass of ethical problems that will severely limit his ability to represent the county as its elected advocate.
Randy has the high level of legal experience required to do the job. He has no conflicts that prevent him from being a strong advocate for the county. I support him wholeheartedly for the office of prosecuting attorney.