Newly appointed court clerk quits

Town officials confirmed that Bethlehem Court Clerk Patricia Parsons has returned to her job with Albany County after less than two months at the post.

Long-time Court Clerk Barbara Hodom, who recently retired and was training Parsons as her replacement, will continue working for the town until a new replacement is chosen, according to Supervisor Jack Cunningham.

She wanted to go back to her job at the county, Cunningham said about Parsons' sudden departure. "Barb's back working, she's continuing in that role and putting in more hours."

Cunningham did not specify any of the details surrounding Parsons' departure.

The town's two judges, Bethlehem Justice Ryan Donovan and Justice Paul Dwyer, are the ones who appoint the town's court clerk, a post whose pay starts at $58,000 a year. The town board only votes to approve the judge's selection, Cunningham said.

An inquiry for comment from Donovan and Dwyer was not responded to.

Speaking in his office at Town Hall on Friday, Aug. 22, Cunningham said, "I met with them [judges] this morning and they have some candidates." The judges are looking at both internal and external candidates, according to Cunningham, but a time table for how long before a new court clerk will be appointed is unknown at this time.

"As soon as we can do it," Cunningham said.

The town board unanimously appointed Parsons its new court clerk during a Wednesday, June 25, meeting and she started five days later on June 30.

Parsons lives in Delmar and has worked for the county for 35 years. When she was first appointed, Parsons told Spotlight Newspapers she approached the town justices about the position after learning Hodom was retiring.

She ran unsuccessfully for receiver of taxes on the Democratic line in 2007 against current receiver of taxes Nancy Mendick, the same year Justice Dwyer won his seat against former Justice Daniel J. Persing.

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