Watertown City Court in 2016. Watertown Daily Times

WATERTOWN — Mayor Jeffrey M. Smith will choose from two candidates to fill the new position of part-time City Court judge.

Three attorneys living in the city applied for the part-time position, but one had to withdraw his consideration after the Fifth Judicial District ruled that he could not fill the post.

Mayor Smith would not identify that attorney or why the court administration would not allow the person to be appointed to the position.

That leaves two unidentified attorneys still in the running. Mayor Smith has talked to one of them and planned to interview the other on Tuesday.

“Still working on it,” he said Tuesday.

He plans to talk to City Council members about the appointment before making a decision. The plan is for the mayor to announce the appointment after getting their advice. The deadline to apply was last Friday.

The successful candidate will work on the bench one or two days a week. Mayor Smith said he doesn’t know the salary of the part-time judge but they would be entitled to state full health benefits.

Applicants for the part-time position must be a city resident and have practiced law in the state for a minimum of 10 years. The successful candidate will serve a term of five or six years.

The vacant part-time judge position was recently established by state lawmakers. The position was created by state lawmakers after eliminating a full-time City Court judgeship.

The city lobbied state lawmakers to eliminate the full-time position, so that the city would not be required to proceed with a $3.1 million court renovation. That project would have added a second City Court courtroom because the state requires each judge to have their own courtroom.

Anthony Neddo is the city’s only full-time City Court judge. Eugene Renzi left City Court on Thursday after he was elected Nov. 3 to Jefferson County Surrogate Court.

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