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Wormuth moving up in county government

Wormuth moving up in county government

Halfmoon Republican Mindy Wormuth is the new vice chairwoman of the county Law and Finance Committee

With the New Year, we’re ferreting out more about who will be leading Saratoga County government in the next few years.

Halfmoon Republican Mindy Wormuth is the new vice chairwoman of the county Law and Finance Committee, which puts her in line — if she wins re-election this fall — to head the Board of Supervisors in 2015. It’s the first step in a leadership climb only slightly less predictable than the ambition of a New York governor to be president.

Wormuth’s appointment wasn’t supposed to come out until next month, but new Law and Finance Committee Chairman Paul Sausville went on vacation and county board Chairman Alan Grattidge was at the State of the State speech, so Wormuth led last Wednesday’s Law and Finance Committee meeting, having been tabbed the county’s No. 3 leader by email.

Since the board majority rotates leadership each year, every town or city that sends Republicans to represent it in Ballston Spa sooner or later gets a turn to have the chairperson. But Halfmoon hasn’t provided the chairperson since the year Apple Computers incorporated and Elvis Presley died. (The Oakland Raiders won the Super Bowl.)

That would, of course, be 1977, when lifelong dairy farmer John Dudek led the county board. Dudek was a colorful guy who could swear like a sailor, though I think he was doing it in Polish.

Dudek was Halfmoon’s supervisor for 18 years. He retired in 1989. No one since him has been re-elected enough times, though Kathy Marchione probably would have been if she hadn’t resigned in 1994 to take a full-time county job.

No other town around these parts has changed as much as Halfmoon since the 1970s. Can you imagine the suburbanites and apartment-dwellers of today’s community electing a farmer? Me neither.

Meanwhile, Clifton Park Supervisor Anita Daly is out as chairwoman of the county Economic Development Committee, a panel she has led for the past five years. Grattidge, who makes the committee appointments, said he wants Daly to concentrate instead on representing the county on the state’s regional Economic Development Council, on trying to resolve infrastructure and financing issues at the Luther Forest Technology Campus and on her new role chairing the Capital Resource Corp.

Jack Lawler of Waterford is the new chairman of the Economic Development Committee.

There are a few changes on the county’s volunteer boards:

• Milton building inspector Wayne Howe will be adding the role of sewer commissioner to his résumé. He will replace Rose Nelson of Ballston Spa, who has retired from the unpaid nine-member commission, which oversees operation of the county sewer district.

• Donald McPherson of Wilton will replace Stephen Porto on the county Planning Board. The affable Porto resigned at the end of the last year. McPherson is an associate principal at The LA Group, the landscape design and engineering firm in Saratoga Springs.

Stephen Williams is a Gazette reporter. The opinions expressed are his own and not necessarily those of the Gazette. He can be reached at 885-6705 or

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