ALBANY -- Outgoing Albany Mayor Willie Adams cautioned Albany City Commissioners Tuesday about letting politics or personal issues play into the board's responsibility to appoint citizens to various local government boards, saying the commission shouldn't play "Russian Roulette" with such an important duty.
Under the city charter, the commission must appoint members to its representative boards and to its staff at the beginning of each year.
Usually it's a fairly mundane, yet important, task, but at Tuesday's work session, the commission briefly discussed the duty.
Ward VI Commissioner Tommie Postell started the discussion by bringing up the appointments, specifically mentioning the appointments to the Albany Water, Gas & Light Commission.
The City Commission has to appoint two persons to that board -- which oversees the operations of the utility -- that will expire in January 2014.
The positions are currently held by State Rep. Carol Fullerton, D-Albany, and former Albany City Clerk Joann Pope, with both asking for reappointment.
Also up for consideration are Jason McCoy, the former candidate for the Ward IV City Commission seat; William Wright, the former president of the Albany NAACP; the Rev. Morris Gurr, a former City Commissioner from Ward III; and Demetria Redding, a businesswoman and former Albany State University Recreation Manager.
Postell didn't elaborate why he brought up the appointment issue for WG&L, but Adams chimed in, "To me, when you're talking about an entity with a $100 million budget, you need to choose carefully who sits on its board. You don't need to play Russian Roulette with a very important responsibility here. ... It doesn't need to be a political appointment."
When the commission decides on the appointments Jan. 25, Adams will have turned over the gavel to Mayor-elect Dorothy Hubbard, who was at Tuesday's work session as a spectator.
Also during discussion, Ward IV Commissioner Roger Marietta asked if people who wish to be considered for a board appointment could still submit a resume for consideration. Consensus was that applications must be submitted by Thursday in order to be considered for a position.