Phil Stockin will be the next county Chairman, Brooke Harris voted Vice-Chairman, and Steven Havey wins Majority Leader contest
By Andrew Harris
The Grand Old Party of Allegany County is in full control. Every legislator elected to serve for the 2022-2026 session is a Republican, just as it was for 2018-2022. Several districts have newly elected representatives, long-time Chairman Curt Crandall is moving on, and Republican party leadership roles are changing fast.
On Monday the party gathered for the annual organizational meeting, a “caucus,” which is a political meeting, not a public meeting. Party members may invite you to the caucus but you can’t just show up. No press are present and no public meeting minutes are kept. In general the internal votes are kept secret but the Republican party did recently provide this press release about the meeting:
We’ve reached out to congratulate and get a reaction from the new leaders of Allegany County government. Presumed Chairman Philip Stockin was careful not to start making statements about his new role until after he had actually been sworn-in. Always gracious, the Headmaster Emeritus at Houghton Academy did offer this:
“I am humbled and thankful to be given this vote of confidence by my peers and intend to work collaboratively with them and all county personnel for the betterment of the good folks of Allegany County.”
Stockin’s wingman, will be Brooke Harris from District 5, after the party voted him Vice-Chairman. Harris replaced Phil Curran, also from District 5 and offered praise for his predecessor:
“I’m honored to receive the support of my colleagues for the position of Vice-Chair. Legislator Phil Curran has filled the position well for many years, and I want to thank him for being a strong role model. There is a tremendous sense of optimism among the members of the incoming Board. We have a great opportunity in the next term to make significant and lasting improvements to our County. I’m looking forward to getting to work.”
The party approval of Stockin and Harris wasn’t a big surprise to most observers. Perhaps the biggest change in the leadership of the county Republicans was the Majority Leader. On December 4th, we published a letter from newly re-elected District 4 Legislator Steven Havey announcing his intention to seek the Majority Leader position. Dwight Healy of District 2 had been the serving as Majority leader but made no such formal announcement, that is not until the evening before the vote.
At almost 10:00pm on Sunday evening prior, Healy sent this letter to fellow Republicans and legislators:
“All, I’m allowing my name to be nominated for Majority Leader for 2022. And here’s the scenario of events concerning the matter. Several weeks ago, I was approached by a fellow Legislator who suggested that I pull my name for Chairman and consent to have my name brought forward for nomination as Majority Leader again, for 2022. I suggested that the other Candidate for Chairman should first be advised by this other Legislator who approached me. Subsequently the other Legislator informed me that he had told the would-be new Chairman of his plan.
Shortly thereafter Mr. Havey had announced he would be running for Majority Leader and an article was subsequently in the Wellsville Sun to that effect and here we are. I have no ill will towards Mr. Havey and I’m sure he could do a good job as Majority Leader. In fact, I had approached him to run for Majority Leader months ago when I was making plans to be the new Chairman for 2022. I draw no negative assumptions from any of this and only offer this as a backdrop to what appears to be my sudden interest in the Majority Leader position, as I believe in an open, honest, and transparent process. For those who are less familiar with me, I have led our Party and Legislators to a 15 to 0 Majority ever since I have been Majority Leader and/or Party Chairman, and I have been a Legislator for 12yrs. In addition, I am well known and have a good rapport with our local, State, and National Representatives and/or Leaders. I also have a relationship with most of our Business Leaders and am personally familiar with the entire County.
With all that, I believe that that I can do a better job as Majority Leader. Nothing against Mr. Havey, and either way he has assured me, and I him, that this won’t affect our personal relationship, mutual respect, or ability to work together.
Respectfully, Mike Dwight “Mike” Healy”
The last minute missive didn’t seem to go over well as the caucus voted to install Steven Havey as the next Majority Leader. That vote tally is secret.
Havey was contacted for a reaction but has not responded as of this publishing. The Wellsville Sun will continue to keep in close contact with the District 4 leader and plans to discuss his new role in an upcoming interview. You can read his letter that foreshadowed his election to the Majority Leader Role: