By MORGAN FRISCH
Recorder News Staff
FONDA — Family and friends supported their elected officials by packing the Montgomery County legislative chambers for the swearing-in ceremony Tuesday night.
Each of the nine legislators took an oath before Montgomery County Supreme Court Judge Joseph Sise. Each legislator put their left hand on a bible while repeating the oath of office after Sise.
“This oath of office isn’t just about Montgomery County,” he said. “It’s about supporting and defending the constitution of the United States of America and the constitution of the great state of New York.”
Sise told the legislators that the oath was promising to discharge their duties as elected officials “faithfully” and “honestly.”
Of the nine, four of the legislators were newly elected: District 2 Legislator Brian Sweet, District 4 Legislator Robert Headwell Jr., District 5 Legislator Daniel Wilson and District 7 Legislator Michael Pepe.
Sweet, a Republican, took the place of Thomas Quackenbush who did not seek re-election. Sweet, former town of Palatine supervisor, said following the organizational meeting that his sole focus was to represent the taxpayers. He is interested in the budget.
“I’m here to represent the taxpayers,” he said. “To make sure every dollar spend is well worth it.”
Headwell, a Republican, has replaced Ryan Weitz, who also did not seek re-election. Headwell resigned as Fultonville mayor on Dec. 31 and said he’s looking forward to something new in 2017 as he goes down a different avenue of his life.
Wilson, a Republican, replaced former chairman Terry Bieniek. Wilson said previously he would like to concentrate on taxes and bringing more jobs into the area. He is project manager for BBL Construction in Albany.
Pepe, a Republican, took the seat of Barbara Wheeler. Pepe, who works for NBT Bank in Gloverville, said it’s a privilege to serve Montgomery County and the constituents of the district. He has also served on the foundation board and as a trustee for Fulton-Montgomery Community College.
“This being the first night, it’s seems like we are off to a pretty good start here,” he said.
Pepe said his main focus is the budget and economic development for the county.
Sise said it’s a “fine thing” to serve his role and swear in newly elected officials.
“I want to commend the members of the second Montgomery County Legislature for their dedication to us,” he said.