Bethlehem names Patricia Parsons new court clerk

"These things are not easy for me because sometimes I feel like I am paddling upstream and maybe that is my role these days," Messina said. "Even though the justices control this appointment this is a $58,000 a year job, it has control of over a million dollars in receipts, it's a responsible position, and that's why we have just given Barbara the accommodations and kudos for a job well done."

Continuing, Messina said, "But as far as I know there was only one candidate."

The councilman pointed out that neither judge nor Parsons were at the meeting to publicly answer questions about the appointment. Supervisor Jack Cunningham pointed out Parsons had a scheduling conflict and could not attend the meeting.

"My strong recommendation is again, whether its appointed or volunteer positions, whether its on courts or on town government, is to seek a bit more competition, and post for jobs to let people know they're out there," Messina said. "I would say the words trust, courage, and political leadership come to mind."

There was a loud applause from Norman Morand, a Republican Committeeman who has frequented town board meetings in the past and had spoke against Parson's appointment earlier in the meeting.

"I'm confused I look at the agenda and see that judges D and D went ahead and make [sic] an appointment and now the board is going to rubber stamp it," "What is going on? I would think that all hiring would be done by the board."

"It's starting to stink up here, I'll tell you that," Morand concluded.

Town Attorney James Potter answered Morand's legal inquiries of Parson's appointment.

"I'll give you a legal opinion Mr. Morand there's a section of the New York State Town Law, section 20, that provides that the justices appoint their own clerk, not the town board, so the board is acknowledging the appointment by the two justices of their own clerk."

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