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Village of Wellsville meeting dominated by potential candidate for mayor


Announced candidate for village mayor served the Village of Wellsville with legal action

The Village of Wellsville responds to allegations of police misconduct

By Andrew Harris

Just before the regular monthly meeting of the village of Wellsville, Mariam Chalom, presented Mayor Randy Shayler with a large envelope. Shayler took the documents, opened the envelope, and carefully read through each page. After he finished reading, Shayler let loose a wide grin and chuckled to himself.

The paperwork was a notice that Marshall Green, who has also has announced his candidacy for village mayor, had filed legal action against the village. Marshall Green has filed this with Allegany County:

The above legal action is to force the village to reverse a decision on public comments during regular monthly meetings. Early in 2024 the village board voted to restrict open public comments the board without prior approval of the mayor and board of trustees.

The legal action demands that the village revert meeting policy back to the policy which was in place before the recent change. Should that request be enforced by the courts, the village will also be required to reimburse Green for his legal expense. Green is self represented and the paperwork filed cost him $220.00 per documents he has supplied.

Shayler and the board opened the meeting with a letter which requested time to address the board, from the same Marshall Green who has announced a candidacy for mayor and filed legal action against the village he hopes to represent. Below is the request from Green and the response from Shayler:

Green to the village of Wellsville Mayor Randy Shayler:

I was informed that you were the liaison for things concerning the police department.  I would like to publicly address the board on the record at the next meeting in regards to the following:

1 – Officer Green lying on an official police report.

2 – The police department investigating its own officers, which has an inherent bias.

3 – The Village Board hiring an independent investigator to determine if Officer Green broke the law.

4 – The Village’s new policies in regards to the public addressing the Village Board at Village meetings.

Village of Wellsville Mayor Shayler’s response at Village Board meeting yesterday, May 13, 2024, 6:00 pm:

1 – The Chief and the Village Attorney reviewed the report in which Mr. Green claims Officer Green is lying.  That claim was determined to be without merit.

2 – It is fairly standard for municipal police departments to investigate its own officers.  Mr. Green seems not to appreciate that the police chief answers to the Village Board of Trustees and myself.  And that it is in the Village’s self-interest to remove officers who are incompetent and have bad character.  However, Mr. Green is entitled to his opinion and can make that a campaign platform.

3 – The Village will not be hiring an independent investigator to determine if Officer Green broke the law.  As previously stated, the Chief investigated the matter, the Village Attorney reviewed the report and concluded no law is broken.  However, the Village Attorney noted that Mr. Green is free to hire an attorney at his own expense and commence suit against the Village if he wishes.  Mr. Green’s motivation appears to be personal in nature and the Village taxpayers should not have to pay for that.

4 – The Village Attorney advised that there is a difference between a public hearing and a public meeting.  He further advised that unless there is a public hearing, the courts have repeatedly held that the public has a right to listen and observe their officials at a public meeting, but the public does not have a right to speak at a public meeting.  The public does have a right to speak at a public hearing.

The village meeting quickly went on to address other agenda items including security cameras for village infrastructure which as fallen victim to theft.

Trustee Ed Fahs presented several resolutions to the board that pertained to maintaining and upgrading the village electric grid. Those resolutions both passed unanimously.

Fahs then motioned to appointed longtime village utility foreman Ryan Stisser to fill a key position on the NY Municipal Power Agency. That motion was also approved without dissent.

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Mary Elizabeth “Betsy”Graham, 72, formerly of Wellsville

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