It is amazing, what Forrest Gump said, about life being like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're gonna get.
So when I came across this story at syracuse.com, I was astounded at the similarities between the situation the Cayuga County Legislature had with their county manager, and the situation our county legislature finds itself in with their county manager. Where the similarities part ways is in how the legislative bodies handled their respective situations.
In Cayuga County, they had a county manager who was completely disconnected from the legislature. In fact, back in July, the Cayuga County Manager sent an email to each of the county legislators letting them know just how "out of the loop" he felt he was. Wow, does that sound eerily familiar.
The crux of the Cayuga County Manager's concerns centered around the fact that the county legislators were bypassing him and going directly to the department heads for their needs and concerns, and that the committee form of government was inhibiting his ability to manage the county. Guess what kind of government we have in Niagara County - the committee form of government.
Interestingly, Allen was the county's first county manager.
Apparently, the relationship between Allen and the legislature has gotten progressively worse. Allen said he's had trouble with some lawmakers since he was hired, and those relationships soured in recent months.
So you know what the county legislature did? They fired him in a special session on Saturday.
With more than a year left on his four-year contract, the county legislature came to the realization that this relationship was not working. Then they had the courage and fortitude to do the right thing by letting Allen go.
There are so many similarities between the situation in Cayuga and the circumstances in Niagara, it's downright amazing. The one difference is how the bodies ultimately will resolve their situations.
Cayuga took immediate and swift action. Niagara is content to wallow while Greg Lewis, who has shown nothing but utter contempt and disdain for the county legislature, sits in his office searching for the next best job.
Congratulations to the Cayuga County Legislature for having the strength to do the right thing.