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Sullivan County Manager Dan Briggs

Briggs Named Manager;
What About the Treasurer?

By John Emerson
MONTICELLO — August 29, 2000 – County Legislature Chairman Rusty Pomeroy made the announcement everyone has been waiting for yesterday when he named Sullivan County Treasurer Dan Briggs as the new county manager.
Referring to Briggs’ appointment as “the worst kept secret in Sullivan County,” Pomeroy made it official yesterday morning before a gathering of people in the lobby of the government center. He also pledged his complete support for the new manager.
“I support Danny Briggs 1,000 percent,” he said as he made the announcement. “He deserves the support of everyone in this room.”
It was widely reported that Pomeroy favored someone from outside the county as his choice for the county manager position. Yesterday, following the announcement, he said those reports were exaggerated.
“I was never bent on hiring someone from outside the county simply because they were not from the county,” he said. “There were two finalists from Sullivan County. I wanted to make sure we hired the best person for the job, and that turned out to be Danny Briggs.”
“At least he has a background here in Sullivan County,” said Thompson town board member John Washington of Briggs’ appointment. “He’s been living here all his life, and he’ll be someone who understands the county and all that it has gone through over the years. I wish him the best of luck.”
Briggs will not assume his new role in county government until October 1 at the earliest. He told legislators during the interview process that he would need three weeks after his appointment was confirmed before he could take over. He said two of those would be spent tying up loose ends in the treasurer’s office, and he wanted one more to gather his own thoughts about the new job.
He said the three-week clock would start ticking once the county tax auction, which is scheduled for next month, is completed.
Now that Briggs has been officially named as the next county manager, the hunt begins for a new county treasurer. The legislature will appoint someone to that position once Briggs takes on his new role.
There remains about 14 months left in Briggs’ term, and the appointee will have to face election next year.
“At this point, we haven’t even had a caucus discussion on this,” said Pomeroy. “There have been several people who have expressed interest in the position, and we’re going to give it a week or two before we start.”
Two of the more prominent candidates at this point are Legislator Chris Cunningham and Deputy Treasurer Olga Parlow. Both apparently have their supporters among the members of the legislature.
Parlow, a Republican who was hired by Briggs as his deputy when he originally took office, has more than 17 years of experience in the office. Parlow’s years of experience may give her an edge among some of the legislators.
Cunningham, a Democrat who is in the first year of his second term as a county legislator, has the advantage of being a member of the legislature’s majority party. Whether the appointment falls out along political lines remains to be seen.
“I think you have to take a long, hard look at the deputy treasurer. You’re looking for someone with experience,” said minority leader Rodney Gaebel. “If, after 17 years, the deputy doesn’t have the qualifications for the office, I don’t know who would.”
Election commissioner Tim Hill said he has already received numerous calls from people outside of government asking about the position. He said the appointment would be in effect until the next available election, which would take place next November.

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