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Rhinebeck supervisor wants to choose Tyner successor in private

Jan 29, 2019 12:30 pm
William J. Kemble is reporting for the Daily Freeman the Rhinebeck and Clinton town boards might meet behind closed doors to choose who will succeed Joel Tyner in the Dutchess County Legislature, notwithstanding the advice of Robert Freeman, executive director of the state Committee on Open Government. Democrat Tyner announced his resignation last week after allegations of sexual harassment were leveled against him. Tyner represented District 11, which includes both Rhinebeck and Clinton, so both town boards will choose a successor to serve during the coming year. Rhinebeck Supervisor Elizabeth Spinzia said a provision of the state Open Meetings Law allows for that selection to be made out of the public's view. Freeman disputed that notion, citing a court ruling that stated appointments made in closed-door sessions applies only to employees of the municipality and not to appointments to fill the unexpired term of an elected official. Spinzia said she sought advice from the New York Association of Towns, noting that she does not consider an elected position to be different from other municipal appointments. The boards have until Feb. 14 to vote on the replacement. Tyner was in the middle of his eighth two-year term as a county legislator when he resigned. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.