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Amherst has benefited from Weinstein’s skills

Amherst Supervisor Barry Weinstein recently took an albatross that had been hanging on the neck of the town and turned it into a golden goose. Weinstein inherited a court case with the New York State Insurance Fund that the previous supervisor was not able to move forward. Known as the Bissell case, it has appeared in The News on several occasions.

The State Insurance Fund was the workers’ compensation carrier for the employer of a badly injured worker and it simply refused to pay up, forcing Amherst to borrow money to fund the settlement. Despite the town winning in court at several levels, the State Insurance Fund still refused to pay. The case, at a higher court, was reversed but the town was given a road map as to how to collect. A settlement meeting was scheduled and after hours of negotiations, with Weinstein as a principal negotiator, the fund agreed to settle for $31 million.

Not only was the original judgment amount recovered for the town, but Amherst was reimbursed for legal fees and interest. The town will end up with a surplus of about $4 million. This would not have been possible without Weinstein’s background as an attorney. Weinstein’s skill set deserves to be retained. He has proven a positive leader for Amherst.

Susan D. McClary

East Amherst