- Rich Klein
INVESTIGATION UNDERWAY INTO DOHERTY/MCGUIRE INCIDENT IN TOWN OF LIBERTY
Updated: Jan 7, 2022
An independent investigation into the behavior of Legislature Chair Rob Doherty and County Attorney Michael McGuire at a November 2 meeting in the Town of Liberty has been launched, according to multiple sources.
The investigation, called for by County Legislature Republican Majority Leader Alan Sorensen and Democratic Minority Leader Ira Steingart, will be conducted by an outside law firm, according to one of the sources.
Details about the investigation, including the cost to taxpayers, the scope of the investigation and a projected completion date have not been made public and are not expected to be.
Calls for the investigation began last month after it was revealed that Doherty and McGuire - along with Assistant County Manager Michelle Huck and an assistant county attorney - showed up unannounced at a Board of Assessors meeting.
According to Mayor Frank DeMayo and Liberty Assessor Vanessa Kelder, the group was there to demand that the Town of Liberty formally announce that the County would no longer have to pay $226,000 in taxes to the town.
Liberty sought payment of the taxes after The Care Center at Sunset Lake property was transferred in late 2020 to the Sunset Lake Local Development Corporation.
That transfer to the LDC meant that the Care Center parcel was no longer tax-exempt, according to Liberty officials and the Sullivan County
Part of the investigation will likely include video surveillance footage of the Liberty building from November 2. Late last month, DeMayo warned the Legislature about the existence of that video.
Doherty is up for re-election as chair in early January and is being challenged by fellow Republican Legislator Joe Perrello.
Legislature Chair Rob Doherty at head of table from this morning's Special Meeting of the County Legislature. County Attorney Michael McGuire is at left against wall with white mask. County Legislator Joe Perrello, who is challenging Doherty for chair, is at lower left in blue sweatshirt.