David M. Moore
The mission of the Law Department is to provided legal advice and representation to the City Manager, City Council and the officers, employees, boards and commissions of the City of Worcester.
Specifically, the Law Department provides legal advice and representation to the City Manager, City Council and the officers and agencies for which the City Manager is responsible for under the city charter. The city solicitor is the chief legal officer of the city and is responsible for the Deputy and Assistant City Solicitors in the department. The functions of the department are performed and managed under four sections: Advice & Counsel, Litigation & Claims, Insurance and Administrative Support.
Advice & Counsel provides legal advice and work products to the officers and departments under the jurisdiction of the city manager, as well as the city council and other autonomous agencies from time to time. This involves: legal opinions on the application of a number of state & federal laws on the authority of city officers and agencies; the production and review of contracts awarded by city agencies; the drafting of real estate conveyance documents, including eminent domain orders, deeds, easements, leases, releases, loan documents; the drafting of proposed ordinances, city council orders and home rule petitions to the state legislature. The advice & counsel section also provides oral opinions and procedural guidance at meetings of various boards & commissions, appears before various state administrative agencies representing city agencies, and provides hearings officer services for various city departments. One attorney in the Advice & Counsel section serves as the head of the City Manager's Enforcement Team known as "CMET", which is an agency of the city responsible for coordinating committee of the "Zero Tolerance" program of the City's Drug House Task Force. The Advice & Counsel section is also responsible for administrating the activities of the cable advisory committee and the cable television franchise agreement.
Litigation & Claims represents the city before the courts and adjudicator agencies of the state and federal governments. There are over two hundred cases pending at any given time in which individuals are seeking to hold the city responsible for injuries or damages suffered. These cases involve:
This section includes the claims agent, who investigates and makes determinations on the claims which generally must be filed prior to bringing suit against the city. One attorney in this section is responsible for prosecuting health, safety and building code cases in the county housing court.