The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Letters to the Editor

August 6, 2013

County law update long overdue

I read with interest Cheryl Peterson’s contribution in the July 26 edition of The Star regarding the Delaware County Board of Supervisors. In the story, Peterson states correctly that Chairman Jim Eisel, the Supervisor of Harpersfield and decade-plus head of the board, appointed Walton Supervisor Bruce Dolph as the chair of the county’s standing committee on finance.

Dolph has been budget director for the county for two years now, and county law 351 requires the budget director be the finance committee chair. This statutory requirement is something, perhaps, Delaware County residents may have assumed both Eisel and Dolph — or longtime finance committee chair and Andes Supervisor Marty Donnelly — would have known; yet they did not.

Missing from the chairman’s announcement was the fact that this statutory requirement was pointed out by me, a relatively new member of the Delaware County Board, in a Legislative Committee meeting earlier this year. I discovered this troubling yet typical anomaly during a cursory review of county finance law, undertaken in pursuit of an update by the Legislative Committee of the Rules of the Delaware County Board. This update is long overdue and I am determined to make it as complete and thorough as possible, all in order that the BOS might function not only within statute but also as a county legislature must and should, with strong cohesive committees, committees that provide minutes and budgets in a timely manner available to one another as well as all residents of the county.

This review and update should also prevent any future attempts to force a move of Delaware County’s Mental Health Clinics from Walton to Treadwell, a move supported by Eisel, Donnelly, Dolph and Bovina supervisor and vice-chair of the BOS, Tina Mole, yet shown by any measure to be badly done, poorly thought-out and, furthermore, illegally (Mental Health Law 41.13 (a)6) and without referral almost shoved down the throats of the remainder of the BOS.

Marjorie A. Miller


Miller is supervisor of the town of Middletown.

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