Horse responsibilities debated by Essex County board

— Chesterfield Supervisor Gerald Morrow had a problem with the contracted rate of $25 an hour.

“That is a lot more than we pay some of our employees who are taking care of people,” Morrow said.

Douglas said the hiring pertained to making sure the horses received the best care possible.

“It is about the specialty of care that is needed in this situation,” Douglas said. “I can go down there and volunteer to clean the poop out of the stalls, but I do not know what the right thing is to feed them or what care they need.”

Michael Marnell said he felt the matter was one of two choices.

“I do not like having to take care of these horses that are there because someone else did not take care of them, but we have two choices, take care of them or go out and dig a big hole and put them all in the ground,” Marnell said. “If we decided not to take care of them, we will have this town lined with protesters.”

“We have been talking about the legal issues here, but there is also the moral issue,” Newcomb Supervisor George Canon said.

“At this point, we do have a moral obligation,” Scozzafava agreed. “But don’t kid yourselves to think that this can be resolved by Dec. 15. This case can drag on and on and on.”

Connell also expressed concerns that with a paid supervisor for the horses, volunteers may no longer want to help for free.

“Once the volunteers stop coming, then we will have to look at hiring someone else and we keep getting deeper,” Connell said.

Both resolutions passed, the one to create an account for donations unanimously while Connell voted against the paid supervisor. Crown Point Supervisor Charles Harrington voted, “reluctantly, yes.”

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