Opinion - Saratoga Springs Politics

The below blog posts are written by John Kaufmann.
These opinions do not reflect the views of Saratoga TODAY newspaper.

Monday, 05 December 2022 09:11

Exodus of Outstanding City Employees Is Troubling

By John Kaufmann | Saratoga Springs Politics
Exodus of Outstanding City Employees Is Troubling

Saratoga Springs has been fortunate to have attracted some outstanding individuals to work for the city in many capacities. This year some key people have either left or announced their plans to leave in the near future. The list includes:

Shane Crooks, Chief of Police

Lieutenant Laura Emanation, the highest-ranking woman in the Police Department

Lynn Bachner, the city's Budget Director

Marilyn Rivers, Director of Risk and Safety

Tina Carton, Administrator of Parks, Open Lands, and Historic Preservation

All but one of the IT staff members

These employees have not only enriched the city with their knowledge and talent, but they have an institutional memory that has been important to the smooth running of the city and will be missed.

A Farewell to Tina Carton

One of those departing employees is Tina Carton, the Administrator of Parks, Open Lands, and Historic Preservation, whose last day in City Hall was Friday, December 2. As chronicled in the piece below by former Finance Commissioner Michele Madigan, Ms. Carton has been at the center of many, many key projects dealing with the quality of life and sustainability of our city. It will be hard to fill her position with someone as capable as her.

From Ms. Madigan:

On hearing the news of Tina Carton’s resignation as the city’s Administrator of Parks, Open Lands, and Historic Preservation, a position required by the Saratoga Springs City Charter, I wanted to express my wholehearted gratitude for all the sustainable project work Tina completed on behalf of our great city. Tina consistently showed herself to be one of the hardest-working employees within City Hall. 

A few projects and memories spring to mind. Tina has been instrumental in the ongoing development of the city’s Greenbelt Trail, the Missing Sidewalks project, the Geyser Road Trail, the Municipal Smart City Street Light Conversion project, bringing EV charging stations to the city, energy benchmarking and bicycle lanes, to name a few. These are all massive projects with huge budgets typically associated with a NYS grant that often require matching funds with quarterly and yearly updates due to the NYS in a timely manner. For the city, Tina was practically a one-woman show. During my tenure, the Finance Office always tried to assist her regularly because we, too, were invested in the successful completion of her sustainable project work. though she very much disliked “Certifications of Sufficient Funds” (a private joke between Tina and me)! I am sure she is simply thrilled to be rid of this onerous task. 

In addition to all of Tina’s project and grant work, she was involved actively with running numerous official city committees: The Open Space Advisory Committee, Climate Smart Task Force Communities, and Compete Streets. She project-managed the city’s Natural Resource Inventory Plan and the Open Space Plan. Tina also prepared excellent website content for the city’s “Sustainability and Resiliency” and I strongly advise residents to review all this great content.

 Tina has a great personality, and I believe her passion for city sustainability projects will be regretfully missed. But we are lucky that Tina will continue to reside in Saratoga Springs, and I’m sure she will stay involved in some manner with sustainable efforts here locally. I wish Tina much success and goodwill in her future endeavors.

 Michele Madigan, Former Commissioner of Finance 2012 -2021

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