The Town of Genesee in Allegany County is back in business, with its officials a little wiser and its coffers about $5,000 poorer.
Acting Supervisor Edgar B. Sherman said that in the wake of the resignations of Supervisor Curville Jordan and Councilmen Robert Deschler and Jerald DeGroff, he and Councilman Clyde Youngs were empowered Friday by Supreme Court Justice Peter J. Sprague, to constitute a Town Board quorum.
Their first action was to appoint former Councilman Charles Barrett to the Town Board. Then that three-member board appointed Clifford Nix, also a former councilman, to the other vacant councilman's seat. Barrett would have taken office on his own in January because he had been elected in November. Both served on the Town Board several years ago.
Sprague last Thursday had ordered the Town Board to meet, then on Friday issued the supplemental order empowering the two to make a quorum, Sherman said.
Town business had been at a virtual standstill, and about $30,000 in bills had gone unpaid since Jordan led a majority vote to dismiss Town Clerk Carolyn Sherman on Nov. 5. Jordan had declared a state of emergency and refused to call a Town Board meeting or conduct town business.
Genesee, a town of less than 2,000, lies between Wellsville and Olean.
The reconstituted Town Board has ordered payments stopped on $21,600 in vouchers and checks that had disappeared from the town offices and then began paying due bills under its new authority. Town officials are trying to recover the missing documents, believed to have been removed by Jordan before he resigned.
The Town Board also appointed a committee headed by Youngs to canvass the town for people who would be interested in the supervisor's office, which pays $3,000 a year.
Asked if he were interested, Sherman, an independent oil producer, did not reject the idea, but also did not say he sought the office.
"We are being very cautious this time," Sherman said.
In his ruling Thursday, Sprague nullified the Nov. 5 dismissal of Mrs. Sherman and ordered her restored to full pay. He also ordered the town to pay all court costs, including legal fees. Sherman estimated the court costs at $5,000.