2 added to GHA board

PHOTOGRAPHER:
King

GLOVERSVILLE — Two new people have been appointed to the Board of Commissioners at the Gloversville Housing Authority.

During Tuesday’s Common Council meeting, the council approved the appointment of Greg Gottung to a term expiring May 2020 and Thomas Canty to a term expiring May 2017, with the possibility of being reappointed.

Mayor Dayton King said that the board had one prior vacancy, and earlier this month, Dorothy Boroson resigned her position on the board. King said Boroson has been out of the area and unable to attend the meetings.

King said he had been looking to find people to serve on the board. He said along with First Ward Councilwoman Marcia Weiss, they reached out to people they thought would be a good fit for the board. He said several people turned down the offer due to ongoing controversy with the GHA.

The mayor and council have the power to appoint people to the board as well as remove them from it.

“My obligation is to appoint and possibly remove board members,” King said. “It is very unique in that way.”

King said that if he felt any board members were being negligent or involved in any misconduct, he would go through the process of removing them. He said this process includes filing charges against them and holding a public hearing on the issue.

“Those are the things I don’t take lightly and I would go through that process if I found there was enough evidence to go through a public hearing on that,” King said.

King said he and council members have met with tenants of Forest Hill Towers and have taken many phone calls from tenants and family members of people living in GHA apartments as well as meeting with current and former employees. He said he has had conversations with GHA Director Tim Mattice, board of commissioner president Mike Ponticello and tenants about issues at the GHA.

“This will remain a high priority for me and it is my goal to keep our citizens, especially those who may not have as many economic resources, are safe and are treated with dignity and respect,” King said.

King said the issues at the GHA are complex with a lot of moving parts.

“I think there is more transparency now than there was in December,” King said.

A number of issues involving the GHA have been in the news since December when nine of the authority’s 11 employees signed a letter of complaint to the board making several allegations against GHA Executive Director Tim Mattice, including that he had created a hostile work environment, that he had ordered GHA workers to do work for the nonprofit Gloversville Housing and Neighborhood Improvement Corp., as well as do work at former GHA board chairman Anthony Ferraro’s house and that Mattice’s brother, John Mattice, was hired improperly by the authority.

First Ward Councilwoman Marcia Weiss said she has received a number of phone calls and emails along with speaking with the tenant association at Forest Hills.

“I believe the safety of tenants at the buildings is high priority. I know that I am going to continue to watch,” Weiss said.

President of the Tenant’s Association at Forest Hill Towers Diane Sauve said there have been problems at the GHA, but said she is thankful for the city’s help in trying to mediate issues at the GHA.

“It means a lot to me, a lot to the tenants and a lot to my fellow officers,” she said.

Kerry Minor can be reached at [email protected]

By Patricia Older

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