Assessing the assessor’s term

Rotterdam Town Board to vote on term limit amendment

— At the Monday, Aug. 8, agenda meeting, some members of the Rotterdam Town Board said they were surprised to see a resolution to extend the term length of part-time assessor John Macejka Jr.

Councilwoman Nicola DiLeva and Deputy Supervisor Robert Godlewski, both part of the interview process for a new assessor, said they thought Macejka understood that the position would be re-evaluated at the end of the year. Godlewski said the board was not sure if a part-time assessor would be able to meet the town’s needs going into the future, so the yearlong trial wasn’t necessarily meant to remove Macejka.

“It was understood by him that it was a part-time position, and we were going to re-evaluate it at the end of this year,” said Godlewski. “That was my impression when we went through the interview process and it was explained to him that it was for a year. We may not have put it in there.”

Town Attorney Joseph Liccardi and Macejka prepared the resolution, which is scheduled for a vote Wednesday, Aug. 10, to clearly state the appointment would last the remainder of the six-year term, which was originally held by Craig Surprise.

“The town can’t say, ‘We are only going to keep him for a year.’ … It just doesn’t work that way,” Macejka said. “It is just correcting and amending the resolution. … It is not a debate, it is state law. An assessor has a six-year appointment.”

DiLeva said she questioned the resolution because during the interview process Macejka appeared to have no problem with the year agreement.

Macejka said the term ending after a year wasn’t discussed with him.

“I went to Bob Godlewski more than once that they didn’t put the term in [the resolution]. He was aware of it, and he never put the term in there,” Macejka said. “What I agreed to is to perform the duties of the assessor and continue the term that was unexpired.”

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