Treasurer leaves office with much deeper reserves for county

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 21 December 2017 at 8:28 am

John DeFilipps, chairman of the Orleans County Legislature, presents a “Special Recognition Award” on Wednesday to Susan Heard, who is retiring after 24 years as county treasurer.

ALBION – When Susan Heard took office as county treasurer in January 1994, the county needed to take out a $975,000 revenue anticipation note to help with cash flow.

The county was in that position other times early in her career. But as the years went by, Heard was determined to boost the county’s reserves. On Wednesday she gave her treasurer’s report to the County Legislature. The county has a cash balance of nearly $10 million.

“This is what I’ve been doing the past 24 years,” she told legislators.

That $9,877,873 on Wednesday compares to $1,957,272 in January 1994, with the amount 24 years ago including the $975,000 that was borrowed.

Heard retires on Dec. 31 after 24 years as treasurer. She was chosen by peers as a county treasurer of the year. She worked in the Treasurer’s Office for 16 years prior to that. She is taking that 40 years of experience to a new job as Gaines Town Clerk.

On Wednesday, county legislators praised her “commendable service and dedication to the County of Orleans.”

She was presented a “Special Recognition Award.” Heard has said she serves as the “watchdog” of the county’s finances, an annual budget of about $65 million with hundreds of line items.

“Through your extreme professionalism serving as our Orleans County Treasurer, our county has benefitted from your extensive knowledge and service,” the citation reads from the Legislature. “Your fiscal oversight to Orleans County and beyond is widespread and long lasting. The Orleans County Legislature does hereby wish you success and happiness in all of your future endeavors, along with thanking you for your service and dedication to the county you were raised in.”

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