The Charlton Town Board member who tentatively resigned from the board on Friday has changed her mind and will remain on the board.
Councilwoman Sandra Verola said an article about her planned resignation in Saturday’s Daily Gazette prompted an outpouring of support that led her to reconsider.
“My email and voice mail have been inundated with supporters who have forcefully argued to me that I should not resign my post,” Verola said. “I have been humbled by such an surge of concern and support, and I have reconsidered my position.”
Verola, who has been on the Town Board since 2004, resigned Friday morning by sending an email to the town clerk.
However, Town Attorney Robert Van Vranken subsequently declared that a resignation sent by email, rather than signed letter, is not an official resignation from the board.
“I will not be sending a letter of resignation,” Verola said in a follow-up email to the town clerk and fellow Town Board members on Monday.
Verola’s actions on Friday were spurred by a dispute that arose last week, when she and two other board members pushed through the Town Board a resolution opposing the draft Capital Region Sustainability Plan. They linked it to United Nations Agenda 21, a set of “smart growth” and “sustainable development” principles adopted at a U.N. conference in 1992.
Two other board members, including Town Supervisor Alan R. Grattidge, asked for more time to study the issue at the Jan. 29 board agenda meeting, but they were outvoted.
Verola acknowledged she became upset after town Republican Chairman Adam Todd called her Friday morning to discuss Grattidge’s concerns that the vote wasn’t postponed.
Todd said he was simply trying to settle differences between board members, as he has on other occasions. All the board members are Republicans.
“If there’s a breakdown in communication, dealing with that is part of my job,” Todd said.
Verola said she didn’t change her mind about departing until after receiving phone calls and emails over the weekend urging her to stay. There are three years remaining in her term on the Town Board.
“I have decided to go forward and continue fighting for what my constituents elected me to do, which is to defend their personal freedoms, liberties, and God-given rights that have been highlighted in our Constitution,” Verola said.
Grattidge said Monday he agrees that the town attorney’s interpretation that the resignation was never official.
“If she wants to come back, I welcome her,” he said.