Second new Pomfret councilman sworn into office

The newly seated Pomfret Town Board is officially in place.

Brett Christy was given the oath of office by Town Clerk Allison Dispense before the board’s reorganizational meeting on Thursday.

Christy, along with Christopher Schaeffer, are the two newcomers to the board. They replace Patricia Lynch Christina, who served for 21 years on the board, and David Penharlow, who served for two years.

“I look forward to working collaboratively with this board, as well as the (Fredonia) Village Board,” Christy said after being sworn in. “I also look forward to learning a lot and doing the best that I can. There’s a lot to learn.”

As part of the official meeting, Councilman Scott Johnston was appointed deputy supervisor. Christina served in that role for eight years prior to Johnston while she was seated on the board.

For committee assignments, Supervisor Donald Steger, Councilwoman Ann Eckman and Johnston will serve on the Audit Committee; Johnston, Christy and Schaeffer will serve on the Buildings Committee; Steger, Eckman and Christy will be on the Cemeteries Committee; Eckman, Johnston and Schaeffer on the Chamber of Commerce Committee; Johnston, Christy and Schaeffer on the Highways Committee; and Eckman, Johnston and Christy on the Parks and Recreation Committee. Also, Steger and Eckman will serve on the Consolidation Committee and Johnston and Christy will be on the Public Safety Committee.

Several reappointments were also approved, including Kirk Hutchinson on the Board of Assessment Review (term expiring Sept. 30, 2018), James Joy on the Planning Board (term expiring in January 2019) and David Fridmann on the Zoning Board of Appeals (term expiring in January 2019).

EvaDawn Bashaw was reappointed as deputy town clerk at a rate of $11.64 per hour. She will serve under Dispense, who will earn $34,843 as town clerk.

Daniel Bigelow will earn a salary of $55,099 as the town’s highway superintendent. Assessor Kevin Muldowney will receive a salary of $35,373 for the year. Warren Kelly will receive $9,360 as code/inspection officer and $2,640 as fire inspector. James DeJoe will earn $7,114 as zoning officer. Jeffrey Passafaro will earn $120 per hour as town counsel and $150 per hour for matters involving litigation. John Bell will earn $15,432 as the Lily Dale Sewage Treatment Plant operator, while Audrey Schmoyer will receive $13,132 as the Forest Hill Cemetery records keeper. The two town justices will earn $14,915 each.

Town board councilmembers will earn $4,500 each, while the supervisor will earn $9,000.

Town employees participating in the town’s health insurance plan will now be required to contribute 10 percent of the annual premium cost, effective Jan. 1.

“It was originally a 5 percent contribution in 2013, and now, in 2014, it’s 10 percent,” Steger said.

The OBSERVER was designated the official town newspaper for the year.

The next board meeting will be Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. in the town hall.

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