The Town Board of Gardiner kicked off the new year and its first meeting of 2021 with a quick, painless agenda.
“Enjoy it while you can,” Town Supervisor Marybeth Majestic joked Jan. 4.
The only item on the board’s schedule was “organization resolutions,” though its content was deceptively long — it contained 42 separate points, all of which required votes by the five councilmembers. Each was met with unanimous “yays,” except for a handful of abstentions due to conflict of interest.
The large majority of the resolutions related to the appointment of town officials. Christine Palumbo was not only reappointed to her position as town clerk, but as clerk to the justice. Julia Hansen was reappointed as deputy town clerk and A.J. Schenkman as town historian. Other reappointments included Building Inspector Andrew Lewis, Building Department Clerk Jewel Turner, Dog Control Officer Andrew McKee, Town Recycling Coordinator Dan Scharf and Municipal Bookkeeper Darlene Halstead. Nancy De Stefano, who had previously served as assessor’s clerk, was promoted to assessor field worker.
Part of the officials’ confirmation was authorizing their salary rates, which the town board had agreed not to increase for any worker including themselves in November. They confirmed Monday that their wages would remain the same as in 2020: Majestic at $42,867 and the other councilmembers at $5,697.
The list of appointments continued, notably for Deputy Supervisor Laura Walls, Town Clerk Michelle Mosher, Supervisor Assistant Emily Sperry, Board of Ethics Chairperson Jon Simonson, Planning Board Chairperson Paul Colucci, Zoning Board and Appeals Chairperson David Gandin and Glen Gidaly as clerk to the latter two panels. Majestic was appointed social service officer with Halstead as deputy, as well as Ulster County’s transportation representative.
A list of holidays were confirmed at the meeting, most of which do not stray from the norm. Gov. Cuomo designated Juneteenth, celebrated on June 19, as a state holiday in July, but at its Dec. 23 meeting the board decided not to observe it. Their reasoning mainly being that it would fall on a Saturday in 2021.
Town board meetings for the next year will also follow previous tradition: the first Tuesday of the month will be reserved for workshop meetings and the second Tuesday for regular meetings. Only one meeting will take place in July and August and the November dates will be shifted to accommodate Election Day.
At its first meeting of 2021, the board also authorized the town to engage legal counsel from select firms on a case by case basis, as well as other boards to engage professional and consulting engineers.