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Jay residents approve elimination of justice position

Jay Supervisor and Essex County Board Chairman Randy Douglas.

Jay Supervisor and Essex County Board Chairman Randy Douglas. Photo by Daniel E. Alexander.

— Douglas said because the town had already made the decision to cut the justices by one, there was already a plan in place for the transition.

“At the end of December, the position currently held by Judge Minogue will be eliminated and there will be the one judge (Deyoe) and he will handle the court docket every Monday night instead of having the judges work on a rotating basis. That serves the purposes that we need.”

Douglas also said because there is no change in court hours, there will be no change in revenues.

“You will still have court the same number of nights so there is no revenue that we will lose,” he said. “Honestly, we did what we thought was best. We always take a hard look at our budget and we have been able to average a 1.75 percent increase during my time as supervisor, which is something not too many towns can say, especially after all that we have been through.”

Balzac said the petition to force a vote on the matter may just be the first of many more efforts by his party intended to, “open,” the governmental process.

“This may be prove to be the opening salvo of a local-government reform effort that highlights the need for more open, transparent and inclusive decision-making not only in the Town of Jay, but in towns throughout Essex County and by our county government as a whole,” he said. “We urge other parties, organizations and especially individual citizens in our towns and county to join in.”

This story was updated to include remarks from Fred Balzac

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