Amenia Town Board conducts traditional reorg meeting

AMENIA — At its first meeting of the new year and in accordance with the results of the November election, the Amenia Town Board convened its traditional reorganization meeting Thursday, Jan. 4, administering the oath of office to new councilmembers and passing a significant number of resolutions necessary for the functioning of the local government.

A capacity audience attended the meeting to see Leo Blackman take his seat as town supervisor, and Rosanna Hamm and Paul Winters to become a councilmembers. Councilman Brad Rebillard was continuing his term. The seat vacated by Blackman is to be filled by a town board appointment.

Numerous residents spoke during the public comment period, recommending that former Councilwoman Vicki Doyle be appointed, citing her longstanding record of service to the community, her multi-term experience on the board and the close election result, a difference of nine votes. Residents spoke of “institutional memory.”

A motion to appoint Doyle to the seat, however, was promptly tabled, followed by board discussion in which newer members sought a wider range of candidates to be brought forward and interviewed. At Blackman’s suggestion, councilmembers Rebillard and Winters agreed to provide a list of qualifications against which such candidates should be measured. To achieve the widest reach possible, residents will be invited to submit names and the seat will be advertised on the town website and in this paper (see below and Classifieds for more information).

The process of seeking and examining interested candidates is expected to extend into mid-February.

Briefly summarizing his perceived goals for the town, Blackman described progress on wastewater, affordable housing, a new highway garage, improvements to the downtown, upgrade of the town website, and perhaps introducing a local satellite office for the North East Community Center.

“Stay tuned and get involved,” Blackman urged, adding that several town committees have openings for volunteers.

Winters echoed the call, encouraging residents to step up, citing needs within the fire department and local food banks as examples.

“People need to know the range of services available,” councilman Rebillard added.


Open call to fill vacant seat on Amenia Town Board

The Amenia Town Board invites all Amenia residents to consider serving the town as a member of the Town Board for this calendar year.

The position opened when Councilman Leo Blackman became Town Supervisor, leaving behind his unexpired term on the Town Board.

The appointment will expire on Dec. 31 of this year; the remaining duration of the unexpired term will be filled at the General Election in November. The person serving for 2024 would have the option of running for the seat in the election by seeking to be included on the November ballot.

Nearly everyone is eligible to be considered for this town leadership position. The qualifications are that the candidate be at least 18 years of age, a resident of the town of Amenia, and a U.S. citizen. The deadline for submitting a resume and letter of intent is Monday, Jan. 29 at noon. The resume and intent letter can be dropped off at the Town Clerk’s office or emailed to dmklingner@ameniany.gov.

Questions can be directed to the Town Clerk’s office or any current member of the Town Board.

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