The new Sullivan County Legislature includes, standing from the left, District 6 Legislator Luis Alvarez, District 9 Legislator Terry Blosser-Bernardo, District 7 Legislator Joseph Perrello, District 1 Legislator Matt McPhillips, District 3 Legislator Brian McPhillips, District 4 Legislator Nicholas Salomone Jr., District 5 Legislator Catherine Scott and District 8 Legislator Amanda Ward; and seated center, District 2 Legislator Nadia Rajsz, who also was elected Chair. Seated next to her are Sullivan County Manager Joshua Potosek and Clerk to the Legislature AnnMarie Martin.
Monticello, NY – The full Sullivan County Legislature was ceremonially sworn in today by Sullivan County judges Meagan Galligan and Jim Farrell.
Matt McPhillips (District 1-Democrat), Nadia Rajsz (District 2-D), Brian McPhillips (District 3-D), Nicholas Salomone Jr. (District 4-Republican), Catherine Scott (District 5-D), Luis Alvarez (District 6-D), Joseph Perrello (District 7-R), Amanda Ward (District 8-R) and Terry Blosser-Bernardo (District 9-R) took their oaths of office in front of a crowded Hearing Room at the Government Center in Monticello.
Afterwards, a majority of legislators chose Rajsz as Chair and Perrello as Vice Chair.
“Thank you very much for having faith in me to do this job,” said Rajsz, the first woman to serve as Chair of the Legislature in 20 years. “I’m hoping I can bring a new perspective and a breath of fresh air into our legislative body. This is a great start, and I look forward to a whole new year.”
“I welcome all the new legislators,” stated Perrello. “We have a job to do, and we need to work together as a body to move Sullivan County forward.”
“I look forward to being a problem-solver,” remarked Matt McPhillips, “and working with what I think is a really great group of people here.”
“Politics are done once the elections are over. We represent the people of this County, and we represent them equally. That is the only way this should work,” said Brian McPhillips. “I look forward to Sullivan County being recognized for the greatness this County holds.”
“I’m looking forward to working in a bipartisan way, as we have a lot of issues ahead of us,” noted Salomone. “Public safety and roads will continue to be my two biggest priorities.”
“I want to congratulate my fellow legislators. I look forward to working with all of you. There’s plenty of good work that needs to be done, and that’s what I’m here to do: good work,” affirmed Scott. “I also want to remind the public that part of this social contract is that you keep showing up and you hold us accountable. We are here to serve you.”
“We have a lot ahead of us, but I think we can tackle it,” agreed Ward, who’s making history as the Legislature’s first African-American woman. “I’m excited that we’ve got such great diversity here, and it’s incredible to be a part of that history. I also am pleased to work alongside the County’s employees and recognize the tireless way they serve the people of Sullivan.”
“This is going to be my 41st year working for Sullivan County,” noted Alvarez, who long travelled the County as a Sheriff’s deputy and is the first Hispanic man to serve on the Legislature. “This is my main purpose: to serve the people. I’ve been told to step back and take it easy. That is never going to happen – this is what I plan to do until the day I die.”
“I look forward to getting to know all of the employees,” said Bernardo, who has already begun profiling County leaders on her blog at www.legislatorbernardo.com. “I’m willing to work with you, learn what you do and how I can help better serve you.”
Committee rosters will shortly be announced, but the meetings themselves are already scheduled for Thursday, January 11 and Thursday, January 18, followed by the Executive Committee and full monthly Legislature meeting on Thursday, January 25, all of which start at 9 a.m. in the Hearing Room of the Government Center, 100 North Street, Monticello. Meetings are open to the public and will be live-streamed. Meeting dates for the rest of the year will be announced in the coming weeks.
For further details, visit www.sullivanny.us/departments/legislature.