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Former Ulster PD says county had the chance to avoid lawsuit

Jul 30, 2020 1:00 pm
Patricia Doxsey is reporting for the Daily Freeman the attorney representing former Ulster County Public Defender Andrew Kossover says the county could have avoided a lawsuit if County Executive Pat Ryan had retracted his claims that Kossover mismanaged the Public Defender's Office and cost the county millions of dollars in state funding. E. Stewart Jones, the Albany-based attorney representing Kossover, said he and his client gave Ryan the opportunity to correct the record, but the administration declined to issue a retraction. Stewart said Kossover had no alternative but to take legal action. The county was served with a notice of claim by the former public defender on May 12. Ryan announced in a February press release that Kossover had resigned after it was discovered that the Public Defender's Office had "repeatedly and inexplicably failed to submit routine and required paperwork to the state Office of Indigent Legal Services to receive ... funding." The failure to do so meant the county missed out on nearly $2.5 million in state aid, including $1.9 million that would have covered money spent by the county, according to Ryan. He called the inaction a "fundamental failure of leadership within and oversight of the Public Defender's Office." Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.