Otsego County commissioners voted Thursday for a new county administrator, but it was not without controversy.
Matt Barresi was selected as the new County Administrator by Otsego County Commissioners on Thursday afternoon. Barresi is the current manager of Gaylord Regional Airport.
“It’s an honor to be selected and to lead such an incredible county,” Barresi enthused.
However, public comment has been heated as some people expressed frustration with the consulting firm hired to fill the job. Although many people said they liked Barresi, they say there should have been more candidates to choose from.
“If all they could find was a man who was fired for mischief, mischief, inaction and is not welcome where he is right now. I think you should get your money back from the consulting firm because he was a bad candidate to face Matt Barresi,” an Otsego County resident said.
The consulting firm Rehmann was commissioned to find the candidates. They say 21 people applied for the job and only four had master’s degrees and experience in public management. They were two finalists, Barresi, and former Gladstone and St. Ignace City Manager Darcy Long. Long was fired as Gladstone City Manager for wrongdoing.
Otsego County Council Chairman Ken Glasser said the lack of finalists was due to a lack of candidates.
“You can have a position open for months and months and not find any candidates. Rehmann did a great job bringing in a lot of candidates,” says Glasser.
However, other commissioners disagree. Commissioner Henry Mason was the only one to vote against Barresi. He suggested waiting until January as eight of the nine commissioner seats are up for grabs this year.
“Matt Barresi is an excellent manager at the airport and I think he will do very well for us. Other concerns, I think I’ll have to keep to myself. Mason said.
The commissioners finally decided on a one-year contract for Barresi.
“I’m truly blessed and honored to work among such incredible people,” smiles Barresi. “I was so lucky that Gaylord and Otsego County adopted me 15 years ago and I will do everything in my power to return that kindness and generosity.”
Barresi will succeed current administrator Rachel Frisch on her last day on Friday.