Colonie Town Supervisor Paula Mahan is administered the oath of office by state Supreme Court Judge Margaret Walsh while her grandchildren hold the Bible and her husband Joe stands by. (Jim Franco/Spotlight News)
COLONIE — Supervisor Paula Mahan and three new Town Board members were sworn in prior to the annual organizational meeting on Thursday, Jan. 2, where a host of appointments were made for the New Year.
In November, 2019, Mahan won a seventh, two-year term by narrowly defeating George Scaringe, a Republican with a long behind the scenes political history making his first run at public office.
Mahan had a 62-vote lead and after some 750 absentee ballots were counted that lead grew to an official count of 105 out of more than 20,000 votes cast.
There was one open seat on the Town Board after Republican Jennifer Whalen opted to run for the Albany County Legislature and two incumbents lost their respective bids for re-election — Republican Chris Carey and Democrat Paul Rosano.
On Jan 2, Republican Town Board members Rick Field and Danielle Futia and Democrat Jill Penn took the oath of office for the first time. Field’s father Fred Field, a longtime Colonie supervisor, held the Bible for his son while Senior Town Judge Peter Crummey administered the oath. Crummey also administered the oath to Futia before Albany Family Court Judge Sherri Brook swore in Penn.
The three new Town Board members will join Democrat incumbents Linda Murphy, Melissa Jeffers Von Dollen and David Green.
Crummey also administered the oath to Town Clerk Julie Gansle, who ran unopposed, before they swapped roles and Gansle administered the oath to the judge, who also ran unopposed.
State Supreme Court Judge Margaret Walsh administered the oath to Mahan while her two grandchildren held the Bible and her husband, Joe Mahan, stood by.
After taking the oath, Paula Mahan touted some accomplishments over the past 12 years including an improved bond rating, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of town departments and upgrades to infrastructure.
“The list of accomplishments goes on and the town is in a great place at this time,” she said to a packed house in Town Hall. “Over the years we turned many challenges into opportunities. I am fortunate to have worked with some great people and as we enter 2020 I am confident we will continue our progress and I look forward to this new term.”
During the organizational meeting, two new positions were formally filled by the Town Board. Craig Blair was appointed to the position of financial projects manager in the Comptroller’s Office for a salary of $40,000 and Thomas Breslin, a former Colonie police officer, was appointed to the position of executive assistant to the supervisor for a salary of $60,000.
The board also formalized a number of appointments and housekeeping resolutions passed to set up the town for 2020.
The following were reappointed to a one-year term:
•Town Board member Linda Murphy as deputy supervisor
•Peter Stuto as Planning Board chair
•Kathleen Marinelli as counsel to the Planning Board
•Michael Garry as counsel to the Zoning Board of Appeals
•David Rowley and Frederick Altman as assistant vehicle and traffic prosecutors
•John Cunningham as Department of Public Works commissioner
•Kevin Franklin as town historian
•Michael Magguilli as town attorney
•Matthew Lorini as law clerk in the Justice Department
•Michael Davey was permanently appointed to sewage treatment plant operator.
•John Kearney was re-appointed as chair of the Industrial Development Agency while Peter Gannon, Alison Blessing Eric Phillips, Gary Rinaldi, Benjamin Syden and Carm Basile were appointed members.
•Brian Austin was re-appointed to a three-year term on the Planning Board and Frederick Ashworth, who was appointed to fill a vacancy in 2019, was appointed to a full three-year term.
•James Campbell was re-appointed to chair the Zoning Board of Appeals for a one-year term and Kirk Huang Nicholas Viggiani were appointed to another five-year term. Tracy Swanson was appointed to fill the vacancy created with the resignation of David Vail until the end of 2020.
A number of people were appointed or re-appointed to various boards and committees. They include:
•Accident Review Committee: Todd Martinovich, Police Department; Steven Cozzy, maintenance, Unit B; Ryan Buff, DPW; Douglas Sippel, general services; John MacDaniel, Unit C member; John Baker, Unit C alternate; Fred Roberts, Unit C member; Michael Forst, Unit B member; Robert Diamond, Unit B alternate.
•Animal Control Committee: Town Board member David Green, Michael Woods and Town Attorney Michael Magguilli
•Board of Ethics: Stacey Rowland was re-appointed to a one-year term as chair and Nancy Garrett was re-appointed to another three-year term.
•Communications Review Committee: Police Chief Jonathan Teale, Town Attorney Michael Magguilli and Town Board member David Green.
•Community Development Citizens Advisory Committee: John Brockley, Sharon DeSilva, Timothy Lane, Martin Robinson, Kyle Simmons, Matthew Cannon, JoAnne Hellijas, Francia McCashion, Helen Romano.
•Conservation Advisory Council: Helen Rosano re-appointed to a one-year term chair and Laura Weed, Sudhir Kulkarni, Michael Brennan and Donald Allard were appointed to a two-year term.
•Emergency Management Committee: EMS Director Christopher Kostyun was appointed chair. Members include: Douglas Sippel, General Services; Paula Mahan, Supervisor’s Office; Michael Biance, MIS; Joseph Bisognano, fire prevention; Jon Teale, police; Ed Sim, acting mayor in the Village of Colonie; John Cunningham, DPW; Mike Haller; police commissioner; David Haller, emergency services; Megan Grenier, mayor of Menands; John VanAlstyne, police; Michael C. Magguilli, town attorney; Richard Haack, Operator Car No. 1 or designee.
•Energy Conservation Committee: Acting Comptroller Christopher Kelsey; Andrew Clermont; Dan Seaver; DWP Commissioner John Cunningham; Dennis Woodsinger; Town Board member Melissa Jeffers VonDollen; Jack Spath; Pure Waters Commissioner Chretien Voerg; and Douglas Sippel.
•Executive Safety Committee: Glenn Roberts, Sr.; Fred Roberts; Chretien Voerg; John Cunningham; and Frank Primo
•Facilities Planning Committee: Appointed DWP Commissioner John Cunningham as chair. Members appointed were Wayne Spenziero; Doug Sippel; Christopher Kelsey; Melissa Jeffers VonDollen; Paula Mahan; Frank Santoro; Michael Maggiulli; Linda Murphy; and Town Clerk Julie Gansle.
•Freedom of Information Committee: Paula Mahan; David Green; Melissa Jeffers VonDollen; and Michael Maggiulli.
•Hazardous Materials Response Plan Committee: Christopher Kostyun appointed as chair and Edward Sim, Joseph Bisognano and Randy Kunker were appointed members.
•Highway Safety Committee: Police Lt. Rob Donnelly appointed as chairman and Colonie police Sgt. Todd Martinovich, officer Robert Sammons, sign shop representative Ryan Buff, Jack Fahey and Joseph Bisognano as members.
•Land Use Law Committee: Rebekah Kennedy was appointed chair and Wayne Spenziero, Melissa Jeffers VonDollen and Joseph LaCivita were appointed as members
•Library Board of Trustees: Keith Volsky was appointed to a five-year term.
•Marriage officers: Rebekah Kennedy and Susan Pellegrini were appointed to four-year terms as marriage officers as per the state Domestic Relations Law.
•Merit Award Board: Paula Mahan, Christopher Kelsey, Jack Spath, Jill Penn, Judy Ekstrom, and Jan Notaro were appointed
•Parks and Recreation Committee: Jack Spath, Christopher Kelsey, Linda Murphy, Laura Archambault, Noel Gebauer and John Cunningham were appointed.
•Sign Review Board: Victoria Breen was appointed chair and Patricia Miller, Mary Magguilli, Bradley Roy and Daniel Pekrol were appointed to five-year terms.
•Significant Environmental Areas Management Appeals Board: Suzanne Perry was appointed chair and Kyle Simmons, Mandy Sheridan and Richard Gervais were appointed to a one-year term.
•Solid Waste Alternative Planning Committee: Matthew McGarry was appointed chair and Dennis Woodsinger and Jack Spath were appointed to a one-year term.