Gaines resident questions GOP snub for town supervisor

Posted 1 June 2015 at 12:00 am


Four members of the Republican Committee for the Town of Gaines – (Lorraine Oakley, past Gaines Town Board member for 11 years; Susan Heard, present county treasurer; Lisa Mannella, married to the present town highway-water superintendent; and Lorienda Smith) – and past Town Supervisor Bill Lattin were present at the Town Board meeting on the April 14.

They accused the Town Board of bullying the town clerk by continuing to inform taxpayers of the clerk’s abuse of office, which includes over-reimbursements, unauthorized pay increases, record keeping deficiencies, unauthorized pay for the deputy clerk, and more. One claimed this is “old news” (though the investigation continues); Two others levied charges of bullying against the board. It seems to me that those individuals were bullying the Town Board.

Then on May 12, Town Supervisor Carol Culhane went before the Town of Gaines Republican Committee for their endorsement. With a vote of 5-2, incumbent Culhane DID NOT get the committee’s endorsement. This leaves Gaines Republican Party without a candidate for supervisor in the November’s election.

It would seem to me that the members of the nominating committee would have put personal issues aside to continue to support a proven winner. Carol has worked tirelessly to clean up sloppy record keeping and indiscretions which led to over-levying of water districts, funds being wrongly accumulated for four years (to over-inflate each subsequent year’s budget), mileage reimbursement and cell phone allowance abuses, and others too numerous to mention here.

I can only wonder why the Republican Committee has such an issue with taxpayers being represented fairly by a town government they can have faith in. Or maybe it’s just politics: You’re supposed to scratch our backs, so we can scratch yours.

Ray Burke
Gaines taxpayer for 47 years