Many people have never had a personal reason to think about the role of the County Prosecuting Attorney. I really hadn’t either until our neighbor was murdered in 2016. Why does it matter who serves as our county’s lawyer?

It turns out, it matters a lot. This is the person who not only prosecutes criminal cases in our community but also provides legal counsel to the county itself. The job is about so much more than just showing up at the courtroom, and the quality of many important county services can vary greatly depending on who holds that office.

Currently, in our community, many criminal cases fail to go to court simply because they are not well organized. This can leave justice unserved and crime victims without recourse.

Additionally, our County Commissioners have important decisions to make and contracts to consider that without timely, objective legal counsel could leave them, and we as taxpayers, vulnerable to costly lawsuits or misguided policies. The staff in our Public Works and Planning departments could also benefit from legal counsel, but it’s up to the Prosecutor to decide whether they advise these departments, or go with the bare required minimum of just advising our elected officials.

In fact, the Prosecutor has discretion over our public funds when it comes to allocating time and resources toward different kinds of criminal and civil cases. This means we all have an interest in knowing the work ethic, experience, and value system of our Prosecutor, not just as informed community members but as taxpayers. There is a great deal of room for improvement in Teton County when it comes to the timeliness, objectivity, and efficiency of the legal services our county government is receiving for our tax dollars.

We have the opportunity to create change and elect Alex Sosa as our Prosecutor this year. Educated at the University of Idaho Law School, Alex has strong legal experience working in rural Idaho communities since graduating and passing the Idaho bar, and promises to serve our whole community without agenda, including competent prosecution of criminal cases and impartial legal advice for Teton County. Please support Alex and help our valley get the truly excellent service we all need, depend on and deserve.

(Visit sosafortetoncounty.com for more info and go to idahovotes.gov to request your absentee ballot today!)