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Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen Issues Formal Opinion Concerning Certain Activities of a County Executive and Requirements of Department Heads Appointed by a County Executive


MADISON — Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen issued a formal opinion today to Milwaukee County Acting Corporation Counsel Mark Grady concerning the authority of a county board to limit the lobbying activities of a county executive; require department heads appointed by the county executive to submit reports to the board; and demote, suspend, or demote department heads and employees.  Van Hollen opined that a county board may require a county executive to clarify that he or she is not representing the position of the county when engaging in lobbying activities on behalf of a position that is not the position adopted by the county.  He further concluded that a board may require department heads to submit reports to the board.  Finally, he concluded that a county board may demote, suspend, or discharge a department head or employee that it did not appoint only if that power is specifically conferred by statute.


A copy of the Attorney General's opinion is available here.


A copy of the opinion request is available here.


Formal and informal opinions issued by Attorney General Van Hollen here.