Friday, June 8, 2018

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Rolison vetoes common council staff measure; override attempt expected this afternoon

POUGHKEEPSIE – Mayor Robert Rolison vetoed the Poughkeepsie Common Council’s adopted law allowing it to hire its own staff.

Lawmakers were concerned with having to use the city’s corporation counsel for legal matters and wanted their own lawyer.

Rolison said the local law does not provide for any means of funding for the staff positions, nor does it address health or retirement benefits along with the long-term impact on the city’s budget.

The mayor said the law also does not provide details as to how many staff can or will be hired, length of service, salaries, or specific job qualifications and does not provide checks and balances involving employment of the staff who would be appointed by the chairperson and would serve at the pleasure of that person.

“Given the lack of detail and the fact that the council did not prepare at financial impact statement showing what this legislation would cost taxpayers, a step that is required by our city charter, it would be irresponsible to the taxpayers to allow this law to become enacted at this time,” the mayor said.

The council will meet in special session at 1:00 this afternoon to vote on a possible override.  The measure passed with a bare five-vote majority on the Democrat-dominated council.  One of the ‘no’ votes would have to switch to override Republican Rolison’s veto. 

 


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