Deputy City Attorney

City of Santa Barbara
Until Filled

Deputy City Attorney - Assistant City Attorney
Deputy City Attorney
$95,682 - $ 116,302

Assistant City Attorney (I, II, or III)
$115,072 - $180,384


The City Attorney’s Office strives to be one of the best municipal law offices in California. Focusing upon great customer service and professional development for its attorneys and staff, the office includes lawyers who are demonstrated statewide leaders in municipal and public law, as well as highly effective advisory, litigation, and enforcement divisions. We are seeking a top-flight lawyer to join us in Santa Barbara.

The City Attorney’s Office provides legal representation and advice to the City Council, Boards, Commissions and all City officers and staff. The office is staffed by eight attorneys, an investigator and five support staff.  Santa Barbara is a full service chartered city, including a public wharf, commercial waterfront, water and wastewater utilities, and a municipal airport.

The vacancy will be filled as either a Deputy City Attorney or a Assistant City Attorney depending on qualifications and experience. 

The Position & Ideal candidate

The Position:

The Deputy City Attorney is the entry level position in the City Attorney's Office. Duties assigned to this classification are distinguished by the level of difficulty and complexity of responsibilities performed. Assignments are recognized as more routine in view of the necessary preparation, the complexity of legal and factual issues involved in the case, the sensitivity of the case in terms of public opinion, the importance of the case in terms of policies and programs of the City and of established legal precedent. An incumbent in this class is expected to frequently use a high degree of independent judgment, working with more experienced Assistant City Attorneys for necessary guidance, and is expected to represent the City Attorney at various meetings, functions and proceedings.

The Assistant City Attorney I position is the entry-level class in the Assistant City Attorney series and is generally assigned legal services ranging from routine to moderate complexity. Under general guidance and reporting to the City Attorney, incumbents receive a portion of their work direction, guidance, review and training from the other staff attorneys. This is a flexibly staffed position, requiring 3 or more years of municipal law experience.

The Assistant City Attorney II is the full journey-level classification in the Assistant City Attorney series requiring prior municipal legal experience. Incumbents perform the more difficult and complex professional legal tasks involving a wide variety of municipal legal subjects with only occasional guidance. This is a flexibly staffed position, normally filled by advancement from Assistant City Attorney I; requires 5 or more years of municipal law experience.

The Assistant City Attorney III is the advanced journey-level classification in the Assistant City Attorney series requiring significant municipal legal experience. Attorneys at this level have at least 7 years of experience as an Assistant City Attorney or equivalent municipal law experience, and are assigned difficult and complex assignments under minimum direction. This position may function as a first line supervisor and a lead attorney and may be assigned supervisory duties in the absence of the City Attorney.

The Ideal Candidate:

The ideal candidate will be an attorney with a substantial, demonstrated interest and commitment to public law.  Experience advising private parties or public agencies on land use, zoning, subdivisions, CEQA and related matters is desirable.  Public law experience is desirable and may be demonstrated through prior public agency representation in either a public or private law office.  Litigation experience is highly desirable.

The ideal candidate will enjoy working and contributing in an office environment that  emphasizes collaboration and flexibility, with frequent client and co-worker teamwork, both in the office and at the clients’ various sites (Santa Barbara City Hall is distributed in a multi-block campus; The Santa Barbara Airport is adjacent to UCSB, Isla Vista and Goleta). The Santa Barbara City Attorney’s Office is highly computerized, so demonstrated experience with legal case management and automated document preparation applications is a plus.

 Open until filled.  Apply by 5:30 p.m. on March 12, 2021 for priority consideration.
You may visit the City’s website to view more information (including job description) and to complete the application and required supplemental questionnaire: