two thousand twenty
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By John Addyman

   LYONS (Oct 12 10) – After the sudden resignation of County Auditor Linda Harissis and the impending retirement of County Fiscal Manager Keith Kubasik – both set to leave county service by the end of the month – Wayne County is scurrying to fill two top financial positions. 

   Harissis is in her 11th month with the county. The supervisors’ Finance Committee this morning gave County Administrator Jim Marquette to go-ahead to source candidates to replace Harissis. The interview committee will include County Treasurer Tom Warnick, Human Resources Director Chuck Dye and three supervisors chosen by Chairman Jim Hoffman. Salary for the position is $65,000.
   Marquette told the committee he intends to abolish the Fiscal Manager position, which draws a $91,590 salary now, with a “Fiscal Assistant to the County Administrator” position, at a salary not to exceed $70,000. The job description for the new position is still being written.
   “The person in the position will be doing many of the same things the Fiscal manager does now,” Marquette said, “but I will seek more written analysis work. 25 percent of the work will be accounting and accounting-related statistical work. Based on some organizational changes being considered, this person may supervise Payroll and we could even have the purchasing agent, if we have one, report to this position.”
   Supervisor Ken Lauderdale (Savannah) noted that because the Fiscal Assistant may fill in for Marquette on occasion, “the board of supervisors should have input on the selection.” He also felt the job description should mandate the person be a Wayne County resident, as a condition of employment.
   The committee also discussed whether this would be a “competitive” state position – requiring a test. Marquette feels it should be an exempt, non-competitive job. “This is not a public officer,” he said. “And I hope to find someone in the county.” The committee voted 4-1 (Lauderdale) to take the hiring resolution to the floor next Tuesday.
   Other subjects discussed in the meeting:
   SNOW PLOWING – The county pays towns and villages to clear some county roads in the winter. What is paid to each municipality varies, and is negotiated separately with each municipality.
   “I’m not satisfied with this if the numbers are the same as last year,” Lauderdale said.
   Marquette said several factors go into the county’s payment number, which is based on the number of trips the municipal trucks make.
   Supervisor Bill Hammond (Macedon) said he wants the county to “hold harmless” municipalities from paying workers’ compensation while truck drivers are plowing county roads.
   “If a worker is hurt doing county work, his town (not the county) pays the workers’ compensation,” Hammond said, adding that prior county snow-plowing contracts did hold municipalities harmless. “This can be devastating to a small community.”
   Marquette said that when the town accepts the county contract, “the town is essentially a private contractor,” but added that the “rate-setting is different with a town than if a private company were doing it.”
   “We need to have a very serious discussion on workers’ comp,” Hammond told Marquette.
   TAX ON CLOTHING – Marquette said although the state had exempted clothing purchases from state tax in the past, that notion was gone with the new budget. The county has no plans to remove the same exemption and will not tax clothing purchases.
“The county exemption is still in effect,” Marquette aid.
   COUNTY FUNDS – Lauderdale asked County Treasurer Tom Warnick if the county would be a customer to Savannah’s bond-anticipation notes, which are required to finance the beginning phases of a new water district.
   “Probably not,” said Warnick. “We have no way of evaluating the creditworthiness of to the Town of Savannah…I don’t have the assurance that you can pay us back.”
   “What is the nature of the county reserve?” asked Supervisor Kim Park (Wolcott).
   “About $50 million,” said Warnick. “That’s the fund balance.”
   CHHA – Park asked County Attorney Dan Wyner if he had been able to complete research the supervisors had requested in preparation for potentially selling the County Home Health Agency (CHHA). Wyner said he had received “significant information” from Ontario County – which sold its CHHA – including the RFP (request for proposals) used and contract documents.


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  1. Anonymous Said,

    Why not eliminate both of the positions and have the treasurer office handle all financial matters. This is the way it was done prior to making these high priced positions and the county seemed to work well back then.

    Posted on Tue Oct 12, 03:22:00 PM EDT

  2. Anonymous Said,

    By all means, let the Treasurer handle financial matters. He constantly complains about how the county is spending money, so lets see how he would do it.

    Posted on Tue Oct 12, 05:18:00 PM EDT

  3. Anonymous Said,

    Good luck in assigning any new duties to Warnick He is an elected official and will do what he wants.

    Posted on Tue Oct 12, 06:01:00 PM EDT


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