Monday, April 22, 2024 - 10:00 AM



Kenneth Hughes, Chairperson

JoePete Wilson, Vice-Chairperson


Chairman Hughes called this Personnel Meeting to order at 10:00 am with the following Supervisors in attendance: Clayton Barber, Matthew Brassard, Chris Clark, Robin DeLoria, Derek Doty, Shaun Gillilland, Charlie Harrington, Ken Hughes, James Monty, Cathleen Reusser, Favor Smith, Matt Stanley, Ike Tyler, Davina Thurston, Margaret Wood and Mark Wright.Steve McNally was excused.Joe Pete Wilson was absent.†††


Department Heads present: Judy Garrison, Dan Manning, Jennifer Mascarenas and Michael Mascarenas.


News media: Sun News Ė Alana Penny


HUGHES:Good morning everyone. I would like to note the time is 10 oíclock on the button.Iíd like to call this Personnel & Administration meeting to order and we will start with Personnel Officer, Jennifer Mascarenas.


J.MASCARENAS:Good morning. I donít have anything in addition to my monthly report and updated vacancy list unless anyone has any questions or anything for me?


HUGHES: Any questions for Jen on the personnel report provided in your packet?Just as side, the graph you have in color is a three page document which is a visual representation of whatís in that chart so if youíre a visual person and maybe not necessarily a list of numbers person, hopefully that helps you out.Once side is the job vacancy totals, applications received underneath that and then we broke it down by the four departments that we found under the most problematic in terms of getting applications so hopefully that data helps you in trying to develop a broad approach to that monthly issue.Daily issue for you, monthly issue for us.


MASCARENAS: The good news on Kenís chart once you get a chance to look at it, it looks like we are having some success in some other areas your place in particular Jim is showing a little bit better, trending in the right direction. Mental Health is trending in the right direction in terms of some of those vacancies. I donít believe they have any positions in Mental Health at this point to fill which is a really, positive sign so some of things we are doing are working and donít always look at that number I know it seems challenging when youíre looking at that big number all the time of 100 vacancies but it varies widely month to month depending on who knows what really thereís a variety of issues but we are having some success.


HUGHES: Also just to supplement, at your desks thereís a two-sided document who has these posters on them.One is for the upcoming Essex County community job fair on May 30th in the lovely Town of Westport at the fairgrounds but there are three Essex County job fairs that are taking place the Personnel office and other departments will be involved in.


TYLER: Excuse me sir, the Essex County Fairgrounds.


HUGHES: What did I say?


TYLER: You said Westport.


HUGHES: I said lovely Westport at the Essex County Fairgrounds.Check the tape.(laughter) I just wanted to make sure you all knew about upcoming job opportunities potentially in some of your communities.If you could please help get the word out and there is a registration form so if you are aware of a business in your town that might be interested in participating as a business and to get the word out there is a registration link that has been put together Iíll make sure you all have a copy of that in your mailboxes. Thanks for your hard work on that and your staff is doing a really great job at working on social media at times they put up very interesting Ė


J.MASCARENAS: We are working on it.


HUGHES: Yes, it is engaging pictures and imagery and they are really doing a great job in getting that work out there so kudos to them.


J.MASCARENAS: Thank you.


HUGHES: Anything else for you Jen?Anything else for Jen?


THURSTON:Can you email these in color?


HUGHES: Absolutely. I will take care of that.Okay thanks so much.Next Judy Garrison, Clerk of the Board.


GARRISON:Good morning. I just have my monthly report, nothing in addition to that this month unless anyone has anything for me?


HUGHES: Anything for Judy?Sorry, Judy there is nothing for you.


GARRISON:Thank you.


HUGHES: Moving on to Dan Manning, County Attorney.


MANNING: Just a couple of house keeping things, I just want to make you aware that with respect to the Assigned Counsel Program. Over the last five years we received grant funding of $3.9 million dollars basically to spend to really bolster and supplement the Public Defenderís office, help us to establish the new Conflict Defenderís Office and also the Counsel of First Appearance program and the Assigned Counsel Program so itís taken burden off of us financially in a lot of respects.Some of this money was actually used for salaries for a clerk for the new public defenderís and for the conflict defender and will be used for the Assigned Counsel Administrator and the attorney for the assigned counsel program and the new money will be for a three year period which is about I misspoke, the last grant provided was $3.3 million the new amount of money for the next three years will be $3.9 million and Mike and I met with them and they are finalizing this budget.


MASCARENAS: Yeah I think we got a new email this morning asking us to review it.


MANNING:Yeah and so I just want to put that out there.Another matter, as part of this budget and the prior budget currently Justin Meyer who is the Clinton County Assigned Counsel Administrator and Clinton County Assigned Attorney has been administering our program while we set this up.What I would like to ask is for a resolution.He currently, we are under contract with him for $30,000 a year, $2500 a month so we need to extend that contract through June 30, 2024, for that $2500 a month I will ask for that resolution the reason for that is we want to get our new assigned counsel administrator and new attorney on board and he will help show them the program and help them with the ropes.It doesnít mean that we will go all the way through June 30th if our people feel they are comfortable by the end of May maybe we could stop that but I think June 30th is a good bellwether.We have the funding in the assigned counsel budget for that and any additional programs so itís not costing us any money.So I would ask for a resolution extending the contract for Justin Meyer from October 2023 through June 30, 2024, a motion and a second.




HUGHES: Discussion?


GILLILLAND:We will make sure to let Mr. Meyer know what we want him to do is to train and get our Assigned Counsel office up and running?




GILLILLAND: Iíve seen this before on other issues.


MANNING: Yeah, itís going to be important because it is a brand new office. Also, the Administrator is going to go down to Washington County and meet with Julie Eagan who is their Assigned Counsel Administrator and various people she will be talking to.Thatís that.


HUGHES:Any further discussion on this motion?Being none, all in favor signify by saying aye, opposed Ė carried. Thank you.


MANNING: Okay I will be quick. Thereís been a newer version of the proposed state law relative to how we are going to handle real property tax foreclosures. Thereís a lot of good stuff in there.The best thing in there is that weíve spoken before about retroactivity and Hennepin statute of limitations this particular law has carried through with what they had proposed before at the New York State level. The Article 78 four month statute of limitations Hennepin was decided on May 25, 2023 so anybody who had not filed a claim four months before May 25, 2024, and that claim is still active according to this local law would be barred from filing a claim. Thatís a great thing.Now, keep in mind this is State Legislation in comparison weíve always been operating under State Legislation and found ourselves in violation with the new Hennepin Law so that doesnít mean that a higher court canít say that this legislation is deficient in some way constitutionally but thatís out there.What it does do it lends credence and gives us a road map to carry on.What will happen is there will be a lot of discussions between the counties as to what we feel, how strong this is and what we feel we should do to undertake future fore closures.There is a CAASNY meeting County Attorneys Association of NY in May which I attend every year which this will definitely be a big topic of conversation so weíll get a lot of feedback there.

Thereís also some good stuff in there about land banks.Thereís a provision in there how to get property in land banks. I read it quickly.Basically you have two attempts at auctions and they have to be close by if nothing happens there or debt board does not meet, the auction place does not meet, the amount of taxes owed and all administrative legal fees which would include this new law also includes as you know you can place on the tax rolls demolition costs and things of that nature those types of additional costs also now are being swept into the overall definition of administrative fees so thatís very important and that gives us a lot of options now to tear down buildings if this goes through because then it gives us the ability to get that money back.Now if it doesnít sell for that much youíre not getting it back but if it sells for a decent amount of money youíll get a decent amount so thatís in there.There are a lot of notice provisions to homeowners.There are claims provisions in the law for mortgageeís judgement creditors things of that nature they have got to make a claim. Thereís some new verbiage Iíve got to put it all in petitions.Theyíve lessened the time when we can begin foreclosure proceedings was 21 months after the lien date. The lien date would say January of 2024, we wouldnít even begin an action until October of 2025, now theyíve pushed that back to 18 months so thereís a lot of stuff you really donít care about but thereís some very good stuff in there.So I think thatís basically it but I wanted to let you know thatís on the horizon and it sounds like it may be passed, so thatís it.


MONTY: If and when this is passed Dan do you think you can put it in laymenís terms over the lawyer speak?


MANNING: Yes I intend to do. I just got this like last Thursday so yeah, Iíve done it before this first round so I will send out a letter.


MONTY: I looked at it and itís like an act of Congress.I couldnít understand it.


MANNING: What they do is they are amended the whole law so they take little sections and you donít know what it is for and so it is complicated.


GILLILLAND:Maximum two syllable words. (laughter)


HUGHES: Any questions for Mr. Manning?Okay thanks for the important update.On your desks primarily for the new supervisors I want to make sure I provided you with a copy of the recruitment and retention task force findings that were approved via resolution back last May so this should be a somewhat guided document for this committee and certainly if any of you in the room committee or not have any ideas on how we can improve our recruitment and retention efforts through the ideas in this policy please let myself or Mr. Mascarenas know so we can discuss how they might be implemented through budgetary means.Are there any other questions before this committee?


WRIGHT:Just real quick, I have a resolution of condolences to the family of Richard Lawrence Bessett.He was a member of the Ticonderoga Elks and most recently spent his summers as member of our Beautification Crew for the Town of Ticonderoga.I will get the words to Judy.




HUGHES: Thank you Mr. Wright.Anything else?


TYLER: Iím not on this committee but there was discussion about maybe going into executive session?


HUGHES: Yes Iím going to do that just before I take care of everything else here.Okay if there is nothing further before the committee we do need to enter into executive session for discussion of personnel issues related to the findings of the Sheriffís Task Force.Moved by Mr. Barber, second by Mr. Wright. We are now in executive session at 10:15 a.m. Thank you.




HUGHES:Okay Iíd like to note that the time is 10:37 a.m. we are out of executive session.No decisions were made during that executive session.I thank everyone for their patience.Is there anything else to come before the Personnel Committee for the month of April?If not, we are adjourned. Thank you.


††††††††††† As there was no further discussion to come before this Personnel & Administration committee it was adjourned at 10:37 a.m.


Respectfully submitted,




Judith Garrison, Clerk

Board of Supervisors