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Hilltown Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, September 29, 2011

Gebe resigns as Berne supervisor

By Zach Simeone

BERNE — George Gebe will be resigning as town supervisor this weekend, just shy of being halfway through his first term.

Gebe, who took office at the onset of 2010, said the decision to leave was a difficult one.

“I’ve been enjoying what I’ve been doing, and the people I’ve been working with,” Gebe said Monday. “I might regret it after I leave,” he said with a laugh, “but I had to make a decision and move on.”

Like fellow board members Peter Vance and James Hamilton, who have decided not to run for re-election this fall, Gebe said he wants to spend more time with his family, though he declined to elaborate.

“My age doesn’t help,” said Gebe, who is 59. “I’ve had some problems along the way, as far as my health. Maybe that brought me to some realizations, too.”

He has been considering resigning for the past few months, he said.

“I think I’ll still be involved with the town, but not with the day-to-day things, Gebe said, adding that he will miss having a job where he is “learning new things every day.”

Gebe, a Democrat, was elected in 2009 by a landslide, in a town where Democrats outnumber Republicans by nearly 3 to 1.

It is too late to file paperwork for candidates to run for election this November. So, the board has a loose, long-term plan for leadership.

“Essentially,” Gebe said, “we are putting in someone as an interim supervisor, just to keep it going till we can find some type of selection committee that will look for someone to appoint, and then turn over those names to the board; they can do an interview; then, finally, select the person.”

Then, in November 2012, the acting supervisor would have to run to keep the post, and finish out the remaining year of Gebe’s current four-year term. Another election would be held in 2013, the winner of which would begin a new four-year term.

Looking back on his two years as supervisor, Gebe is most proud of how the town handled natural disasters, like the five-feet-in-five-days snowstorm of early 2010, he said.

“We got the roads open in fairly good fashion,” said Gebe, crediting Highway Superintendent Kenneth Weaver.

He went on to mention the installment of the new Kaehler Lane Bridge, which had been in disrepair for more than a decade, and “trying to find the monies to offset that cost.”

“And, of course, this flooding we just had, which devastated some parts of town, and we got things back fairly quickly, thanks to Ken and some of the board members,” Gebe said. “Everybody worked as a team, and that’s what you have to do to accomplish these things.”

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