JOHNSTOWN - The New York Municipal Insurance Reciprocal last week handed out more than $71,000 in rebate dividend checks to most of Fulton County's municipalities.
NYMIR officials attended the Fulton County Board of Supervisors meeting and, in a presentation, disbursed capital return-fund checks to the county, its two cities and nine of its towns at the County Office Building. The municipalities are members of the agency.
According to its website, NYMIR was founded in September 1993 with 26 local government subscribing members. Fulton County Administrative Officer Jon Stead was a driving force in getting the agency formed.
"Over one-third of the more than 1,600 general purpose municipalities in New York state are now members, making NYMIR the largest municipal property and casualty underwriter in the entire state." the site says. "NYMIR remains, more than ever, an insurance company for local governments."
Among the speakers at the board meeting were Kevin Crawford, NYMIR executive director, and Stephen J. Acquario, executive director of the New York State Association of Counties.
Crawford noted the 20th anniversary of NYMIR and left American flags with each municipality in celebration. He said all the capital the municipalities have put into NYMIR when they joined the program has been returned, and now NYMIR is returning interest.
Checks were presented as follows: Fulton County, $25,787; Gloversville, $17,651; Johnstown, $13,918; Bleecker, $966; Caroga, $2,365; Ephratah, $1,042; town of Johnstown, $3,850; town of Mayfield, $1,639; Northampton, $1,304; Oppenheim, $1,262; Perth, $1,487; and Stratford, $649.
Broadalbin is the only Fulton County town that's not a member of the reciprocal. Supervisor Joe DiGiacomo says the town used to be a member but now works with a local insurance company, though the town frequently evaluates its needs and potential insurers.
Despite weather disasters like Hurricanes Sandy and Irene, Crawford said NYMIR's fiscal situation has "never been stronger."
"This only works when local governments stick together and stay together and that's the case in Fulton County," Crawford said.
Acquario noted Stead's early involvement in NYMIR, adding that NYSAC continues to be "actively involved" with the reciprocal.
"Clearly, with the growth, we're doing something right," Acquario said.
Stead, who said he enjoys pointing out Fulton County is the "birthplace" of NYMIR, said it is "probably one of the most successful" intermunicipal arrangements in state history.
Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.