"Pivotal day" for Jefferson County - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

"Pivotal day" for Jefferson County

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BIRMINGHAM - AL -

A pivotal day in Jefferson County comes with a bankruptcy settlement, the county's first lead female attorney and a development day.

Noticeable change is coming to Jefferson County as a woman is joining the ranks of the county's top leaders. Carol Sue Nelson was hired as the next county attorney. If the Maynard Cooper & Gale attorney accepts, she will start June 3rd.

Nelson's hiring comes as a federal judge is taking a look at whether the county is hiring and treating women and minorities fairly.

It's an issue close to Commissioner Sandra Little Brown.

"It's time to get all the rhetoric out of the way. Let's clean up government and move forward. To hire a female with an impeccable record of doing what's right and fair and just makes me feel real good," said Brown.

Nelson will replace Jeff Sewell who involuntarily retired last month. She graduated at the top of her class from Auburn then Cumberland School of Law and comes with experience in labor and employment law.

"We wanted someone who can assist us in navigating the discriminating consent decree that's been in place 30 years," said Commission President David Carrington.

The hiring of Nelson wasn't the only big piece of business Thursday. Commissioners continued moving the county forward out of bankruptcy with the final approval of a 105 million dollar settlement with JP Morgan Chase and a German bank. They also moved the county back into business by giving a nod to a townhouse development in Gardendale.

"They're sort of saying on the economic front, 'Hey. Jefferson County is getting ready to be back.' I think we will have more job announcements in the coming month," said Carrington.

The first person hired to fill this position was Alabama Supreme Court Justice Mike Bolin. Bolin turned down the job after conversations with his family.

Carrington was asked if Nelson would take it, they said to ask her.

Nelson didn't return calls. 

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