For the fourth time since 2013, the supervisor’s seat in the town of Barrington is empty, effective Jan. 15, with John Kuehne’s resignation.
Kuehne notified members of the town board at the Jan. 3 organizational meeting that he was leaving the post, writing in his resignation letter, “I came into the office of Supervisor with the sincerest intentions. I felt that my background and experience made me someone who could improve some of the day-to day-processes that would enable the town to serve its tax base better. But after a rather frustrating year for all of us, I have found myself in a position where I am unable to effectively provide the leadership to make the changes needed and to resolve the issues the town faces.”
Kuehne, a Republican, defeated former supervisor Eileen Farnan (D) in a special election in November 2017 by a nearly 2-to-1 margin, to take over the seat that had been temporarily filled by former Supervisor Fred Wright after Phil Warren had resigned earlier in the year. Warren had been elected in 2015 following Wright’s original terms in office.
The town council will appoint someone to the position who they hope will be able to run for election in November, according to board member Susan Lange.
“I hope we find someone who will do the best things for the town,” says Lange.
For most of the time the town supervisor position has been transitioning from one occupant to another, the local government in Barrington has been tangled in conflicts with Seth Olney, the owner of The Olney Place and son of long time council member Nate Olney, who is also Deputy Supervisor.
Related to those conflicts, former Barrington Town Code Enforcement Officer John Griffin faces charges for offering a false instrument for filing, 2nd degree, a misdemeanor. Yates County District Attorney Todd Casella confirms that Griffin was cited by New York State Police in connection to documents he filed with town officials regarding The Olney Place.
Griffin filed two certificates of occupancy for an addition to the Olney Place, each with different dates.
Casella says there is no need to seek a different venue for the case since Griffin is no longer employed by the town and Judge David Grace from Benton is acting as Barrington Town Justice after former judge Renee Crofoot’s resignation last year.