Carmen's blog

Speech at Sullivan County Government Center

Thank You by Village Trustee Carmen Rue
Monticello, New York – April 7, 2008


Thank you, Dan Briggs, for swearing us in today. As Danny can tell you, I have been campaigning door-to-door for this election since last June. I covered this entire village. I personally collected more than 100 absentee ballots in this election.

Swearing-In Ceremonies

I plan to take my Oath of Office as a Village Trustee two times tomorrow. The public is invited to both ceremonies, as follows:
  • Sullivan County Government Center lobby, 10:00 AM, by County Clerk Daniel Briggs
  • Village Hall, during the reorganizational meeting, 7:00 PM, by County Court Judge Burton Ledina.

A Little About Powers Of Village Officers

Village Law of the State of New York is worth reading. For the sake of informing the public, here are a few points worth noting:

Village Law, Sec. 370. Powers and duties of mayor.
The mayor shall preside at all meetings of the board of trustees; he shall be the official head of the village for services of civil process;The phrase "for service of civil process" as used here simply means that whenever the Village is sued, the mayor has the honor of being named as a defendant; and of being served with the summons and complaints commencing such suits. he shall have no power of veto, but shall have the same power as a trustee to vote upon all matters coming before the board. Added L.1927, c. 650 Sec. 47, eff. July 1, 1927.

By contrast, the Village Board of Trustees is described this way:

Village Law, Sec. 369. Legislative powers vested in board of trustees.

All the legislative powers of the village conferred upon or possessed by it are hereby vested in the board of trustees. L.1927, c. 650, Sec. 47; amended L. 1963, c. 56, eff. Feb. 25, 1963.

Monticello has a form of government in which a Village Manager is designated as the chief executive officer.

The mayor is a figure-head whose chief job is to keep board meetings running smoothly and encourage teamwork among the Trustees.

Only when the Village Board operates as a team can it govern effectively. The Village Board as a whole, by majority vote, has the power to appoint or to fire the Village Manager.

Some positions in the Village are chosen by the mayor. Some are chosen by the manager. Some (like who will be Village Manager) require approval by the board.

And some appointees must meet very specific qualifications. For example, although the mayor has the power to choose a Village Attorney, the person he chooses must then be approved by a majority of the Board. Also, the mayor is not allowed to choose any old lawyer. The Village Attorney, as well as any deputies, must be Sullivan County residents. Monticello's own law mandates:

Local Law No. 12 of 1994.

The Village Attorney and all Deputy Village Attorneys must reside within Sullivan County, New York, the county in which the Village of Monticello is situate.

Thank You!

I thank the voters who turned out for the March 18th election for the betterment of Monticello. You did your part.

Now I am holding up my end of the bargain: to make government more welcoming of citizen input, to support firm and fair enforcement of the Village Code, and to see that all residents and Village employees are treated with respect and fairness. Together, we can make Monticello a safer, more attractive, and pleasant place to live, work, worship, and have fun.

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