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Orleans County

County’s tentative budget would raise taxes by 2.5%

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 November 2017 at 11:26 am

ALBION – The tentative budget for Orleans County in 2018 has been filed and shows a 2.5 percent increase in taxes.

The tax levy, what the county collects in taxes, would increase by $421,913, from $16,728,410 to $17,150,323.

The tax rate would increase by 19 cents or 1.9 percent to $10.05 per $1,000 of assessed property, according to the budget submitted by Chuck Nesbitt, the county’s chief administrative officer.

The budget is within the state-imposed property tax cap because the county has some carryover from prior years when it was below the cap level. The levy since 2014 has grown a collective 4.31 percent, or an average of 1.08 percent annually, Nesbitt said.

The tentative budget proposes $69,804,984 in spending, which is up 6.4 percent or by $4,190,360. The biggest change in expenditures is the $3,646,000 in state- and federal-funded bridge projects in 2018. That is up from $152,000 in 2017, for a difference of $3,494,000.

The budget benefits from a more “robust” local economy, Nesbitt said in his budget message. Home sale prices have increased, and sales tax revenue is up in 2017, with an additional $610,000 in sales tax budgeted for 2018.

Some burdens on the budget include:

• A $230,000 loss in revenue from the Seneca Nation, which is in a dispute with the State of New York over local and state gambling payments.

• An additional $273,618 for jail operations, mainly with medical and mental health costs, due to the opioid epidemic.

• An extra $202,845 in Medicaid ($8,211,137 total in Medicaid in 2018).

The budget keeps contributions to some agencies flat, while giving some an increase. The Cobblestone Museum, which sought a $7,500 county contribution, remains out of the budget. Other funded agencies include:

• Libraries, stay at $10,000

• Orleans Economic Development Agency, from $170,000 to $180,000

• Sportsman’s Federation, stays at $1,000

• Soil and Water Conservation District, from $80,000 to $92,500

• Cooperative Extension, stays at $240,000

• GO Art!, stays at $3,000

The fee for solid waste and recycling service will be $212 for the year, which is up $5.

There will be a public hearing on the budget at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 4 at the County Courthouse.

To see the line items in the budget, click here.

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Planning Board would like to review proposed addition to County Administration Building

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 November 2017 at 9:43 am

ALBION – The Orleans County Planning Board would like to see the final plans for a proposed 22,000-square-foot addition to the County Administration Building.

Municipalities tend to be exempt from getting local reviews and approvals from other municipalities for building projects. While the county doesn’t need Planning Board approval, members of the board said a review could result in a better project.

“I truly believe when we have these discussions, and sometimes they are vigorous discussions, that we get a better product in the end,” said Ron Vendetti, a member of the board representing the Village of Holley.

Planning Board Chairman Brian Napoli brought up the issue during Thursday’s Planning Board meeting.

“They’re expanding the building,” Napoli said. “Shouldn’t we see the plan?”

The 17-member Planning Board reviews projects around the county for new buildings, additions, zoning changes and other land use matters.

“It’s kind of a double standard,” Napoli said. “They make zoning ordinances for everyone else.”

This rendering from Wendel shows a proposed 22,000-square-foot addition to the County Administration Building.

Vendetti, in his role as Albion code enforcement officer, said some recent projects in the village were exempt from his input, including projects at the school district and the new bus garage on county-owned land on West Academy Street.

Having another professional look over the plans could save significant money later if a mistake is caught before construction, Vendetti said.

“There is a lot of experience and expertise on this board,” Vendetti said. “I think we put a better product out when we sit here and talk about it.”

The Orleans County Legislature has approved a maximum bond of $10,063,881 for an addition to the County Administration Building on Route 31, behind the nursing home. The Public Health Department, Board of Elections and other county offices will be relocated to the new addition.

Jim Bensley, director of the county’s Department of Planning and Development, said he would talk with county legislators about having the project go before the Planning Board for a review.

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Despite projected savings with police proposal, so far few village residents pushing for changes

Photos by Tom Rivers: Paul Bishop, an associate principal with CGR, goes over five possible options for providing law enforcement services in Orleans County. Bishop is speaking at Medina High School during a public meeting on Wednesday.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 November 2017 at 9:04 pm

MEDINA – A law enforcement efficiency study shows significant savings for village residents if the village police departments are dissolved and the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office assumes the additional work.

The report says villages would have similar police presence and response time, and the village tax rates would drop, perhaps as much as $6 to $8 per $1,000 of assessed property in the Village of Albion, for example.

Despite those savings (several hundred dollars a year for a typical homeowner), few village residents are pushing for the change, according to Albion and Medina officials.

Medina Mayor Mike Sidari said village residents have been fairly quiet about the issue. As mayor he wants to see the final report from the consultants and the committee working on the issue before he has an opinion.

Medina hosted the third public meeting on five options for law enforcement services in Orleans County. Last week, CGR held meetings in Albion and Holley. (The next meeting is scheduled 7 p.m. on Nov. 21 at the Lyndonville High School Auditorium.)

About 40 people attended the meeting Wednesday at Medina High School on the law enforcement efficiency study.

The five options range from the status quo to dissolving the village police forces and having a single-entity law enforcement department through the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office.

Eileen Banker, the deputy mayor in Albion, said she hasn’t heard support for dissolving the village police, even with the projected savings.

“People are satisfied with what they have,” she said today. “They feel safe. They know when call they will get a response that is fast.”

Paul Bishop, an associate principal with CGR, has been working on the study since August 2016 with a committee that includes local elected officials and law enforcement officers. The calculations show the Albion village tax rate would fall from about $18 per $1,000 of assessed property to $10 if the village police department was eliminated and the Sheriff’s Office assumed the village patrols. If the Sheriff’s Office maintained the same number of officers as the village departments, the county tax rate would go up about 20 percent or $2 per $1,000 of assessed property, according to the report.

This slide shows that Albion has the highest crime rate in the county. These statistics are a 5-year average.

Sidari and Banker both said the issue hasn’t drawn a lot of comments from the community.

“No one has been coming to our meetings to say if it’s a good or bad idea,” Banker said.

She was referring to the twice a month Village Board meetings. During a meeting last Wednesday about the law enforcement study in Albion, several residents said they would be concerned with a decline in staffing in the villages and a longer response time if the county took over the job.

Bishop said the option for a single law enforcement agency calls for keeping the same amount of officers, 52, in the county. Bishop said those officers wouldn’t be bound by jurisdictional lines and could respond where they are needed. Often that is just outside village lines and busy state roads, he said.

Bishop told about 40 people in Medina on Wednesday that the service and response times might improve under a single law enforcement agency. He also sees opportunities for the officers to specialize, perhaps with drug detection or as juvenile officers.

“Community discussions will drive what happens next,” Bishop said. “Are you happy with the status quo or is there something here to go after?”

This slide breaks down the types of calls for law enforcement officers. The leading call is traffic violations, with public safety assists the second-leading when officers help other agencies.

The law enforcement entities in the county – Orleans County Sheriff’s Office, Albion PD, Medina PD, Holley PD and a part-time officer in Lyndonville – currently cost about $7 million collectively. Bishop said those costs will likely climb to $9 million in the next 10 years in the current model.

In a single entity department – keeping the same number of officers – Bishop said the cost in 10 years would stay close to the current $7 million. There would be reduced personnel costs, even without staff cuts. All of the officers would be on the county contract. The average pay for Sheriff’s deputies with three years’ experience is $50,000, while Medina police officers are paid about $53,000 after 3 years, and Albion officers are paid $63,000 with 3 years of experience, Bishop said.

“Erie and Monroe counties pay substantially higher and that’s where you begin to lose some officers,” he said.

Orleans County recently approved a new contract for deputies that has narrowed the gap with the pay at Albion and Medina, Bishop said.

“The village officers are paid more but it is not a dramatic difference,” Bishop said.

Some of the other options explored by the committee include:

• Expanded Collaboration – The departments remain intact but share resources for evidence storage, central booking and holding, and training and tools.

• Villages Scale Back – Albion and Medina both have two officers on night shifts, and Holley has one officer committed overnights. However, there are few calls between 2 and 8 a.m. on weekdays. One option would be for Albion and Medina to have only one officer working during that low-call volume five days a week. Holley could not have an officer at those hours. There are existing resources to help the villages with the Sheriff’s Office and State Police during the overnight.

That would save Albion and Medina about $100,000 a year. The savings wouldn’t be very dramatic in Holley because that department covers many of its shifts with part-time officers.

• Villages Contract with County – The villages could abolish their departments and contract with the Sheriff’s Office for dedicated patrols and service within the villages. Bishop said residents would notice little change, but would see about $250,000 in savings in the Village of Albion, for example, and about $200,000 in Medina. The savings would primarily come from the reduced pay for the officers who would now be county employees. Some of the administrative tasks would also shift to the county, saving the villages some costs.

Holley and Lyndonville, because they use part-time staff, would actually have to spend more if they contracted with the Sheriff’s Office because deputies are full-time with benefits.

In the contract option, the villages would pay for patrol cars and capital costs. The villages would still bear much of the expense of the operation, but the law enforcement officers would be county employees managed by the sheriff or an appointed leader in the Sheriff’s Office.

Paul Bishop goes over some options for law enforcement services in Orleans County.

If a village moves to eliminate its police department, the issue would need to go for a public vote. Bishop said the police unions will likely fight the changes and elected officials may not embrace them, either.

He asked about 40 people at the Medina if they supported pursuing some of the options, including the single entity agency. It was split in Medina, with about half open to looking at the single entity agency and half saying they liked the way law enforcement services are currently provided.

Bishop said CGR will work to compile feedback at the four meetings in a final report that could be ready in mid-December or by the end of the year.

To see the report on law enforcement in Orleans County, click here.

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New class graduates from small business program in Orleans

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 November 2017 at 9:38 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers

ALBION – The fall 2017 class has graduated from the Orleans Microenterprise Assistance Program. About 500 people have now graduated from MAP since it started in 1999.

Pictured, front row, from left: Diane Blanchard, MAP coordinator for the Orleans Economic Development Agency; Delanda DeLucia, dog grooming business; Beth Schorer, owner of Beth’s Freshly Started Sewing Box; Patrick Dishaw, Mold and Radon Assessment Services; Joe Nelson, Alana Monska and Jason Monska, A & J’s Bakery and BBQ Catering.

Small business advisors Dick Pettine, Jon Costello and Sam Campanella; Amanda Mrzywka, co-owner of Navarra’s Farm Market; Joan Navarra-Mrzywka, “Joaney Baloney” food truck at Navarra’s Farm Market; Felicia Viloria, considering a hot dog stand; Sara Mathes, owner of Sassy Girls Sparkle; Linda Suhr, IPA beer and wine retail store; Joshua Fisher, JJ Contracting; and Ben DeGeorge, owner of the Arnold Gregory Office Complex, where the class meets and there are offices for small businesses. Not pictured: Kerry Rosenberg, dog wash business.

The 10-week gives small business owners tips in marketing, handling stress, computers, legal issues, bookkeeping and taxes – all factors that are key to running successful businesses. They also must complete a business plan. The graduates are now eligible to seek low-interest financing for up to $30,000 from the Orleans EDA.

The Orleans Economic Development Agency has run the program since 1999, with classes in the spring and fall.

The class is held at the Arnold Gregory Memorial Complex in Albion. The graduation program was Tuesday at The Village Inn.

The EDA is preparing for the spring class which starts in April. There are spots available. Contact Diane Blanchard, MAP coordinator, at (585) 589-7060.

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Orleans municipal damages, costs from lake flooding add up to $2.75 million

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 November 2017 at 5:10 pm

FEMA expected to reimburse municipalities for much of their expenses in fighting flood

File photos: Jason Hardenbrook, a Kendall Highway Department employee, picks up a sandbag on May 5. Highway workers teamed with inmates from the Wyoming Correctional Facility in Attica to fill and stack sandbags. Kendall should be reimbursed any overtime, fuel and out-of-pocket costs for its response to the lake flooding this year.

WASHINGTON, DC – The decision by the Trump Administration to issue a Major Disaster Declaration for the New York State southshore counties could result in more than $2 million collectively to the lakeshore towns of Carlton, Kendall and Yates, as well as Orleans County.

The three towns and the county collectively spent about $250,000 for overtime, diesel fuel, and other expenses with filling and moving sandbags, said Dale Banker, the county’s emergency management director.

The flooding and erosion from the high lake waters also caused $2.5 million to 14 sites that are publicly owned in the county, Banker said. That includes infrastructure and municipal property.

The disaster declaration doesn’t include damage to residential and commercial properties.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will review the records submitted by the municipalities and should issue reimbursement checks, Banker said today.

The FEMA declaration so far includes the southshore counties of Jefferson, Niagara, Orleans, Oswego, St. Lawrence and Wayne.

The declaration releases FEMA public assistance and hazard mitigation funds to cover emergency work, repairs and replacement of disaster-damaged facilities, as well as make long-term improvements to reduce the impact of future disasters, U.S. Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer said in a news release on Monday.

Sandbags are stacked by the Kendall Town Hall on May 5.

“This is a massive and well-deserved shot in the arm for many lakefront counties that we fought long and hard to secure,” Schumer said. “It will provide federal funds for many counties hit hard by the relentless lake flooding, but we will keep up the pressure until we secure the same support for both Monroe and Cayuga Counties. Residents along Lake Ontario dealt with record-high lake levels and it has caused them to close businesses, caused damage to homes and eroded shoreline protections.”

“This Major Disaster Declaration for New York State is an important step to help the communities near Lake Ontario recover from the record flooding this past year,” Gillibrand said. “This designation unlocks important FEMA funding to repair damaged infrastructure and helps ensure that the Lake Ontario shoreline is better protected against future flooding. I will continue to do everything I can to make sure that the residents hurt by this severe flooding have all the resources they need to fully rebuild.”

Schumer and Gillibrand explained that, with this disaster declaration grant assistance will be made available to state and local governments, as well as certain non-profit organizations, to reimburse costs incurred for emergency work and the repair or replacement of damaged facilities. This funding is available on a cost-sharing basis; FEMA generally covers 75 percent of the eligible costs for permanent and emergency work.

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Youth Bureau welcomes community feedback on prioritizing funds for youth programs

Posted 15 November 2017 at 2:22 pm

Press Release, Jocelyn Sikorski, Executive Director of Orleans County Youth Bureau

ALBION – The Orleans County Youth Bureau allocates funding to youth-serving organizations that provide programming to meet identified community needs.

In order to insure that resources are being used effectively, we are seeking input from community members.

We have developed a quick survey with demographics through Survey Monkey for youth grades 6 and up, parents, concerned members of the community and youth serving professionals to complete in order to gain their perspective.

There are 6 Life Areas identified through this survey that the Youth Bureau/Board uses to fund programs on an annual basis.  With your help, we will evaluate and prioritize the Life Areas that are important to our community.

This needs assessment will be open November 15 – December 15, 2017.  This is a great way to gather feedback from our community when it comes to determining what programs and services are needed.

To complete the survey, please click here.  The survey will only take a couple of minutes to complete.

Thank you in advance for providing your feedback, Orleans County Youth Bureau.

Click here for more on the Youth Bureau.

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President Trump approves Lake Ontario disaster declaration

Posted 14 November 2017 at 3:46 pm

File photo by Tom Rivers: Congressman Chris Collins gets a tour of Green Harbor Campground and Marina on July 5 from co-owner Barb Anderson. The campground in Carlton was badly flooded by the high water from Lake Ontario.

Press Release, Congressman Chris Collins

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) commended the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for approving the disaster declaration for flooding along the Lake Ontario shoreline.

This flooding has been attributable to the failed Plan 2014 that leaves the south shore of Lake Ontario in danger of historic erosion, Collins said. The congressman has been working closely with the Trump Administration to make sure this declaration was a priority amongst requests for other devastating disasters across the country.

“We have witnessed awful devastation along the shoreline and have stayed persistent in our fight to secure federal assistance,” said Collins. “My constituents desperately need this support and I thank the Trump Administration for its commitment to Western New York.”

Federal funding is available to the State and to tribal and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the flooding in the counties of Jefferson, Niagara, Orleans, Oswego, St. Lawrence and Wayne. Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

“Today’s news means that those impacted will have access to the wide-ranging disaster assistance FEMA can provide, but we will continue working with the Administration to make sure new IJC commissioners will be appointed to put an end to Plan 2014,” added Collins.

Collins has met with both President Trump and Vice President Pence, sharing his concerns about Lake Ontario’s shoreline flooding, the IJC and Plan 2014. Staff from the Collins office and the White House have been working closely since the request for a disaster declaration was issued to make sure this funding was secured. Monroe County remains under review and Collins will continue to work toward a resolution. Collins has received support from state and local leaders in highlighting these needs.

“We are very pleased with the FEMA declaration being made.  Hopefully, this will be the last time we need a declaration for these reasons,” said E. John DeFilipps, Chairman of Orleans County Legislature.

“This is great news for Niagara County and its lakeshore residents that have sustained serious property damage along our shoreline,” said William Keith McNall, Chairman of Niagara County Legislature. “Niagara County sincerely thanks Congressman Collins for his several trips to view lakeshore conditions and property damage through the last several months.  Niagara County recognizes and appreciates Congressman Collins’ persistent and unending efforts in trying to attain this funding that is so important to lakefront communities, for which Niagara County is very grateful.”

“I know I speak for lake-shore residents, small businesses, and local governments when I thank Congressman Collins for his hard work to ensure New York gets the federal resources it desperately needs for flood recovery. As lake levels recede, we’re still fully assessing the damage. FEMA aid will be a critical step as we help devastated home and business owners and as we rebuild our communities,” said State Senator Robert Ortt.

“FEMA’s decision today is a monumental step for our communities who have been living with the damage done by Lake Ontario’s flooding since last winter. While the damage was certainly unparalleled, this funding will undoubtedly help NY State continue helping those in need. I commend FEMA for its decision and I thank Congressman Collins for all of his hard work during this time and in making this funding a reality,” said Assemblyman Steve Hawley.

“FEMA’s approval of the disaster declaration for flooding is very welcome news to the residents and businesses that have endured the devastation of the extreme high water levels of Lake Ontario’s south shores. I applaud President Trump for his action and Congressman Chris Collins for his tireless advocacy on behalf of these communities. I will continue to work hard fighting for the necessary funding and resources to make our shoreline communities whole,” said Assemblyman Mike Norris.

“Congressman Collins has led our NORA (Niagara Orleans Regional Alliance) fight from day one for our Lakeshores, to Washington, and back through Albany. These monies are desperately needed to offset the horrendous expense incurred by this man-made disaster created by the IJC. We thank you Congressman Collins.” said David E. Godfrey, Niagara County Legislator and Lynne M. Johnson, Orleans County Legislator in a joint statement.

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Veterans speak of love for ‘military family’

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 November 2017 at 12:54 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – David Kusmierczak of Medina stands with the color guard during the Veterans Day observance at the County Veterans Service Agency, 13996 Route 31 West. Veterans and community members stood in the freezing cold to remember and honor the sacrifices of veterans.

The program today included short speeches by veterans who have served in wars since World War II. This photo shows Vietnam War veteran Ray Smeal at the podium.

The 105 mm howitzer in front of the Veterans Service Agency office was used in the Korean War. That cannon was dedicated at the site on July 27, 2003, the 50th anniversary of the end of the Korean War.

Nancy Traxler of Waterport served 27 years in the Air Force, including a tour of duty in Afghanistan. She said she enjoyed working with other soldiers on missions.  She works as a veterans service officer in Orleans County. Trailer said her current role keeps her active with veterans and connected to the “military family.”

Steve Goodrich, commander of the American Legion Post in Lyndonville, also served 10 years with the U.S. Navy as a corpsman. During Desert Storm he worked out of a Naval Hospital in South Carolina, and collected and sent 2,400 units of blood to the battlefield.

Joshua Fleck of Holley served 20 years in the military including a tour in Iraq. He said soldiers and veterans look out for each other.

“I miss it everyday,” he said about his time in the military.

Matt Passarell, right, and Mike Donahue were part of the Honor Guard at today’s ceremony in Albion.

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Repeat winner in County Tourism Photo Contest

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 November 2017 at 7:31 pm

The winner of the 2017 Orleans County Tourism Photo Contest has been announced. Peggy Barringer of Albion took the winning photo this year – “When the Sun Goes Down…at the Point” – on Sept. 21 at Point Breeze, showing a fisherman and a sailboat in silhouette at sunrise.

Barringer also won the contest in 2016 with a photo of lilacs in bloom at Mount Albion Cemetery.

Dennis Button of Albion came in second with “Memorial Day Cemetery” at Mount Albion. Elizabeth Carpenter of Waterport was third with a photo from the top of the tower at Mount Albion, looking above the tree line towards the county courthouse in Albion. “

Judging was tough as there were 25 photographers who submitted 85 images that captured the essence of Orleans County – from rainbows & sunsets to waterways & wildlife, said Lynne Menz, the county’s tourism director.

A jury of 15 was asked to rank their top 10 picks with the following criteria to consider:

• Does the subject have a Tourism draw?Is this an interesting attraction worth travelling to? Is it current?

• Quality: Is the photographer skilled in using interesting design elements such as depth-of-field, perspective, texture, symmetry or contrast? Is this image “Magazine Cover Worthy”?

• “Only in the OC”: Is the image iconic to Orleans County or could this picture be taken anywhere?  Does it represent Orleans County’s character?

• The WOW Factor: Does the image spark a positive emotion in you?

• The I-GOT-IT! Factor: Was the photographer in the right place at the right time?

View the Top 15 entries by clicking here.

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Planner who has tackled many projects named County Employee of the Year

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 9 November 2017 at 9:42 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers: Sarah Gatti, a planner in the Orleans County Department of Planning and Development, was named the county’s “Employee of the Year” today.

ALBION – The Orleans County “Employee of the Year” enjoys working with data and creating multi-layered maps to helps residents know the zoning and other characteristics of their property.

Sarah Gatti is a planner with the Orleans County Department of Planning and Department. She joined the county 2 ½ years ago and has worked on numerous projects, including the consolidation of the county’s agricultural districts into one county-wide district. That effort involved three mailers to property owners – 1,000 letters each time.

Gatti sent the letters and had categorize the results. The county-wide district has made the ag districts more efficient and much easier for farmers to manage, especially when the land in multiple districts, said Jim Bensley, director of the Planning and Development Department.

He also praised Gatti for creating “Map Orleans” – a free-, intuitive, on-line mapping tool on the county website. It allows the public to see aerial views of all parcels in the county, and see, in graphic form, information about legislative representatives, zoning districts, bus routes, garbage collection days, and lots of environmental data.

“It’s a wealth of knowledge for current and prospective residents and developers,” Bensley said in a letter, nominating Gatti for employee of the year.

She also generated a workbook for the County Emergency Management Office to help with documenting the flooding that occurred along the Lake Ontario shoreline this past spring on both private and public land.

The county’s Planning and Development Department is working on a comprehensive plan update in western Orleans County. The department has sent out surveys and is compiling that feedback. Gatti, again, has been instrumental in the effort, Bensley said.

Gatti, in her first year on the job, also created a map of local farm markets and produce stands.

Bensley praised Gatti for tackling many of the tasks “with remarkable speed and precision.”

Gatti was picked employee of the year by a committee in the Employee Assistance Program. The committee chose from employees of the month, including October 2016, Danielle Champeney (social services); November, John Rich (public health); December, Julie Papalia and Jennifer Hazel (social services).

January 2017, Connie Ferris (public health); February, Scott Dugan; March, Sarah Gatti (planning); April, IMA employees in social services, Mary Barnard, Marilea Greean, Julianne McGrath, Julie Papalia, Christine Pask, Angel Slick, Jennifer Szalay and Lisa Thrash; May, N/A; June, Amberlyn Robinson and Liz Milazzo (social services); July, Patricia Eick (emergency management); August, Elizabeth Liebert (mental health); and September, Rose Michaels.

Provided photo: Sarah Gatti, center, is congratulated on her award by, from left: County Legislator Ken DeRoller, Legislator Lynne Johnson, Personnel Director Jack Welch and Legislature Chairman John DeFilipps.

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