County attorney authorized to join litigation

BELMONT — Allegany County is weighing its options in opposition to the “Green Light Law” signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in June.

On Monday, the Board of Legislators unanimously granted county attorney Carissa Knapp the green light to “investigate, commence or join litigation to enjoin implementation and enforcement of the ‘Green Light Law’ on behalf of Allegany County.”

The controversial legislation secured driving privileges for undocumented immigrants and protected the data of those applying for licenses from any third party, including law enforcement, without a subpoena or warrant.

The county’s resolution said the state’s Green Light Law impedes the federally enacted REAL ID Act of 2005, which requires proof of citizenship, lawful permanent residency or temporary lawful status to obtain a driver’s license.

The county is also concerned about voter security.

The resolution goes on to state the Green Light Law would enable “non-US citizens to register to vote as it fails to provide any provision to allow the employees of the Department of Motor Vehicles to monitor the voter registration application of any such non-US citizen who registers to vote at the time of applying for such NYS driver’s license as such voter registration application is in all respects carried out in secrecy.”

Allegany County Clerk Rob Christman has previously come out strongly against the Green Light Law and encouraged the Board of Legislators to follow suit — https://www.wellsvilledaily.com/news/20190712/allegany-county-clerk-stands-firm-against-green-light-bill

Now, Knapp is authorized to join other efforts in the state opposing the law.

Legislator Brooke Harris (R-Alfred) asked if the county would be liable for court fees if it joins in a lawsuit and the case fails.

Knapp said she will be investigating whether taking action is in the county’s best interest. While she is now authorized to join litigation, she said she would discuss the matter further with the board in attorney client sessions.

In other business, the board approved sale of six leftover 2019 tax sale properties, with Harris casting the lone no vote. The sales included a pair to the Allegany County Land Bank at 172 and 178 East State Street, going for $1,950 and $1,850 respectively. A property at 1474 Terbury Road in Alfred sold for $928.37.

Other properties sold were 4216 Holdridge Road in Allen ($2,000), 80 W Main Street in Friendship ($4,000) and 282 State Route 19 in Willing ($500).

Robert Thompson of Scio was appointed to the Allegany County Planning Board to fill the unexpired term of Bill Emrick.

The county officially accepted a bid of $330,000 from Two Rivers Timber Co. of Addison to log the Travis Lot in Angelica and Allen.

A public hearing was announced for Aug. 29 at 10 a.m. at the Crossroads Center regarding a proposed PILOT project (Travel Center) on County Road 20.