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April 3, 2014

Board praises outgoing social-services chief

(Continued)

Accounting for the acuteness of social service needs lately is a combination of factors, including the recent recession, the scarcity of jobs and the increasing fragility of family bonds, she said.

“I think it’s the way society is going in general,” she observed. “I’m usually a very optimistic person, but I don’t see things improving without some real effort on somebody’s part. It think there needs to be greater collaborations between businesses and government, with private money, government money, churches, everyone collaborating. We’re limited in what we can do. I think we need outside investment.”

Boyd’s deputy commissioner, Eve Bouboulis, was named acting commissioner Wednesday while the county opens a search for a permanent commissioner.

The commissioner job pays $65,000 a year, and because the salaries of county managers have remained frozen for more than six years, it is not immediately clear if the board is prepared to offer a higher salary to Boyd’s replacement.

Board members favoring keeping pay flat have cited strains on the county budget as the reason for not approving cost-of-living increases.

But Koutnik said if the logjam remains unbroken, “it’s going to make Otsego County a less-inviting place to work.”

Boyd’s departure was related to personal matters, not to the debate over county salaries, officials said.

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