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Forum set on planned change to Glenville supervisor’s job

Wednesday, November 27, 2013
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— Public hearings are a good way for residents to have their voice heard, but they aren’t the most effective way to get answers.

That’s the reason Glenville town Supervisor Chris Koetzle gave for he and the Town Board scheduling an informational community forum Monday regarding the proposed restructuring of the supervisor’s office. The forum will be a chance for residents to hear a presentation on the restructuring, ask questions and get answers.

“One of the frustrations with public hearings is that people often try to ask questions, but you can’t answer them in the moment,” said Koetzle. “So this is really an effort to inform. This is about communicating with people as much as we can.”

Koetzle and the board members took heat at a Town Board meeting last week on their proposal to make the currently part-time supervisor position a full-time one. About half of the residents who spoke during privilege of the floor did so to criticize or question their representatives for attempting to change the position without first receiving public comment and input.

Because privilege of the floor rules prevent the supervisor and board members from answering any questions while someone is having their say, many questions went unanswered until the “supervisor’s comments” portion of the meeting. Others were forgotten in the heat of the moment.

The community forum will be an opportunity for residents to engage in a question-and-answer round with their town representatives on the proposal, said Koetzle.

The board did schedule a Dec. 4 public hearing on the proposal, giving residents another opportunity to have their say. But the town’s rules on public hearings are also not conducive to a question-and-answer format.

“We feel like this will give an opportunity for us to answer all questions and provide as much transparency as possible,” said Koetzle. “I’m very hopeful that residents will come out, and not just the small group of very vocal, politically aligned people who have made this more about a personal issue than what is best for the town.”

The board has planned a short presentation for the Monday forum, followed by a question-and-answer session. The presentation will include information on the history of the supervisor’s position, a comparison of the position and proposed pay with other towns, the efficiencies the restructuring would create and the savings it would achieve.

Koetzle, who is currently paid a part-time salary of $19,152, estimated the move would save the town about $16,500 in its 2014 budget. If the restructuring to full-time is approved, he would draw a full-time salary of $83,000 — the amount currently paid to Director of Operations Jamie MacFarland, who is retiring.

The board members have proposed keeping the line for Koetzle’s current part-time salary in the budget so that they have the option of keeping MacFarland on in a part-time capacity to handle some extra responsibilities during the transition. The director of operations position would be eliminated.

Koetzle said the savings would come from eliminating a $10,000 salary included in the budget for a confidential secretary to the supervisor — a position that was filled once during his tenure, but lasted only a year.

“Then we would have additional savings because once Jamie retires, the town won’t be contributing to health insurance and retirement at t

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November 28, 2013
12:22 a.m.
mlamendola says...

Ha ha ha. Love it that Mr. K believes people who disagree with him are politically aligned malcontents rather than citizens who think what he is doing is truly wrong. Nice spin on it. My guess is the board will pay lip service to the public and offer some nice smoke and mirrors while doing their best to avoid answering the question of when did Mr k know that Jamie was going to retire. Perhaps the public should ask Mr. K when did file his retirement papers with the state. They should at the least ask Jamie when he told Mr. K he planned to leave. It seems to me the town would have had to make some provision in it accounts for jamie's retirement costs. I find it unbelievable no one at town hall knew he was leaving prior to the election. Also if Mr. K had no clue about Jamie's retirement prior to the election, then,well, he seems to be poorly informed about what is going on right under his nose.

November 28, 2013
7:05 a.m.
fnb05 says...

What is with all of the conspiracy theories about Mr. MacFarland's retirement Mike? Get over it and start providing real answers about what you would do if presented this situation. The dems that have been the most vocal have provided no constructive comments in this discussion. Just cynical remarks, conspiracy theories and partisan politics as usual. What shortsighted individuals like yourself, Ms. Bern-Smith and Mr. Draves fail to realize is that the salaries are only part of the equation. The real benefit to the taxpayers are savings in health insurance and retirement (pension) costs for full time municipal employees. This move truly does benefit the TOG, but unfortunately partisan politics seem to cloud the better judgement of people like yourself, Ms. Bern-Smith (a NYS employee that knows all to well what she receives in insurance and retirement benefits that those in private industry will never see by the way), and Mr. Draves. See you at the public hearing Mike?

November 28, 2013
7:36 a.m.
mlamendola says...

you are missing the point fnb05. The point isn;t whether there is money being saved. the point is when did Mr. k know about jamie;s retirement. Why did mr. k wait UNTIL after the election to announce he wanted a billion dollar raise. that is my point, FNB05, not partisan politics. If you canlt see that as an issue, then perhaps you need refresh your understanding of the word "hoodwinked." Because hoodwinked is what happened here. My point fnb05 is that Mr. k knew about jamie;s retirement prior to the election and rather than mention before the election he was going to take the job fulltime [which no doubt would have no doubt angered voters] he waited until after the election and then professed ignorance about jamie's retirement plans. My point fnb05 is that mr. k is was not ignorant of these plans, that he knew before the election about jamie;s retirement, that he chose NOT TO TELL the public [hoodwinked] about it. I am not calling mr. k a lair , but I think he has no explaining to do. that is wmy point fnbo5. Also, I have no horse in this race. I do not even live in glenville, I do not vote there and I am apolitical. I ma not a political malcontent in other words. I just think Mr. k's answers to the question are weak sauce.

November 28, 2013
9:21 a.m.
fnb05 says...

More conspiracy theories Mike and please don't patronize me. I get the point but your accusations are baseless. Prove that the TOG Supervisor knew for certain that Jamie was going to retire. Jamie stated for the record (quoted in the Gazette) that he made the decision after the election. Jamie is a man of his word and anyone that knows him knows that he has always put the TOG first. End of story, MOVE ON! I am a resident of the Town of Glenville, so to me the point is that MONEY IS BEING SAVED! Billion dollar raise Mike, really??? Apolitical Mike, really??? All of your talking points are right out of the SCDC manifesto. More disinformation Mike on par with the robo calls sponsored by the Schenectady County Democratic Committee that were flat out lies. Then again, when you have leadership at the Federal and State levels that continually lie and sneak things through in the dead of the night, this should come as no surprise.

November 28, 2013
1:38 p.m.
mlamendola says...

Lol. I have nothing to do who politics in glenvie as I also know Jaimie and I am familiar with mr k. He used to hang out in Amsterdam btw. I doubt that me me k was ignorant of Jamie's retirement plans. Bit please attend re forum and ask me me k directly when he knew Ask him when did Jamie file his retirement papers. Ask him if the town budgeted for Jamie's retirement. In other words follow the money. And please do not slander me with a political handle. I could care less about politics in glenville. And someone who questions what is going on is not a political operative. To accuse someone of that is to insult people who honestly question the bs coming out of the tog.

November 28, 2013
8:50 p.m.
fnb05 says...

You could care less about politics in Glenville Mike yet you spend all day responding on a blog about the forum to change the Supervisor of Glenville's job. What a turkey you are Mike and on Thanksgiving, how appropriate! "I am familiar with mr k....I doubt that me me k was ignorant...follow the money..." PROOF MIKE PROOF! C'MON, WHERE IS THE PROOF! More conspiracy theories Mike. PROOF! BTW, to slander you would be to defame you through spoken word in public. Read your prior e-mails and my responses to same are certainly not libelous. " I have Nothing to do with politics in Glenville", but here's my own conspiracy theory about you Mike, you are part of the SCDC and your mission is to spread lies and disinformation to discredit the leadership of the Town of Glenville. BTW Mike, tell me this, what say you about all of the no show jobs within the County of Schenectady. Specifically, give me your opinion of Schenectady County Communications Director Joe McQueen who at 80K a year, uses "sick days" on county time for the purpose of putting forth libelous propaganda for SCDC. Follow that money Mike! Add up all of the other county no show jobs and not only are the salaries astronimical, the benefits paid for same are even more exorbitant!!!

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