Johnsburg bids farewell to longtime supervisor

NORTH CREEK Retiring Johnsburg Supervisor Bill Thomas would have preferred that his last meeting on the board pass quietly and without fanfare. He almost made it. But at the end of Tuesdays Town Board meeting, his fellow board members surprised him with a proclamation followed by several minutes of impromptu testimonials to fete the outgoing supervisors nearly two-decade tenure at the towns helm. I know you asked that we not do anything, said Boardmember Sterling Goodspeed. You never like to draw attention to yourself. ...But we felt it was appropriate that we recognize what has been a remarkable tenure of service to this town. Thomas public service began in 1983 and included stints with the school board, the fire company, as town justice and since 1990, the town board. With accomplishments too numerous to mention, two specific Thomas initiatives stand out, Goodspeed said. The train station and the Gore interconnect, Goodspeed said. Who could have envisioned all those years ago that wed have train service restored to North Creek. And you literally brought the mountain to the village. Boardmember Eugene Arsenault has served side-by-side with Thomas since 1983, he said. He was always a gentleman, Arsenault said. We didnt always agree. In fact often we didnt. But we were always able to respectfully disagree. He always put the interests of the town before his own interests. ...As you leave here tonight, Bill, be proud! Bob Nessle, a longtime volunteer in numerous town causes, praised Thomas for his approach to leadership. He brought openness to town government, Nessle said. Privilege of the floor never happened before Bill. Lets hope the openness continues. Its been great and Bills been wonderful. Thomas said he was grateful for the opportunity to work with so many people -- both residents and town officials -- who willingly give their time and talents on behalf of the community and said it was those people who inspired him. He pledged to keep active in town issues. Youll see me around, he said, flashing a broad grin.

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