ALBANY COUNTY – During the Albany County Legislature’s first meeting of 2017, on Monday, Jan. 9, members will consider appointing former Albany County Commissioner of Public Works Darrell Duncan to represent New Scotland and part of Bethlehem, filling a vacant seat in the 38th Legislative District that was created by the resignation of L. Michael Mackey, who took his seat on the New York State Supreme Court on Jan. 1.
The appointment would be for only one year. After which the position will go before voters for a candidate to finish out the remaining three years of the term.
Democratic committee members in the district recommended Duncan, a Democrat and lifelong resident of New Scotland, to succeed Mackey, who was elected judge in November. As Albany County Public Works Commissioner, Duncan managed a $14 million budget, approximately 100 employees and seven substations. He was responsible for maintaining 305 miles of county roads, 116 miles of state roadways and 77 bridges, according to county officials.
“I have known Darrell for many years, firstas an outstanding athlete growing up, and then as a dedicated public official,” said Albany County Legislature Chairman Sean Ward. “We look forward to working with him in the capacity of an Albany County legislator.”
Albany County Legislature Majority Leader Frank Commisso said Mackey had a productive five years as a legislator. “Michael Mackey served the people of Albany County well in his positions of legislator and chairman of the Law Committee,” he said, “and we’re conﬁdent he will do an excellent job as judge.”
Duncan graduated from Clayton A. Bouton High School in Voorheesville. He worked as New Scotland highway superintendent from 1994 to 2012. Duncan has been a member of the Voorheesville Fire Department for 36 years, the American Public Works Association for 29 years, the Albany County Highway Superintendents Association for 31 years and a charter member of the Sons of the American Legion for 34 years.
The legislature’s minority conference will be offering up their own appointment in an effort to increase representation in the body, which currently constitutes only about a quarter of sitting legislators. Timothy Stanton, who ran against Mackey for the seat in 2015, lost by only about 200 votes and is expected to run again for the seat next year if not approved on Monday. The office of the minority was unsure whether Stanton enjoys any bipartisan support for approval, which would be necessary for him to win the seat. Calling Duncan “a nice guy,” Dan Hogan of the legislature’s minority office said, “we’d prefer to have our candidate, Tim Stanton. We’d like to have a larger minority in the Albany County Legislature. We feel we’d be better able to represent the people outside the City of Albany and given more of a voice in Albany County government.”
Duncan’s appointment, which would only be valid for one year before he would be required to run to retain his seat, is expected to be easily approved by the full legislative body, according to the office of the majority.
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