Senator Robert G. Ortt
Robert G. Ortt was sworn into office as a New York State Senator for the 62nd District in January of 2015. From January 1st, 2010 to December 31st, 2014, Rob served as Mayor of North Tonawanda. In that role, he developed executive experience with an in-depth understanding of local government. Prior to becoming Mayor, he served as the City Treasurer and then, Clerk-Treasurer of North Tonawanda. On April 3rd, 2007, Rob was appointed as City Treasurer by the Common Council. On November 6th, 2007, he was elected to serve a four-year term by his fellow citizens, which began on January 1st, 2008, after he was officially sworn in at City Hall. On November 4th, 2008, the people of North Tonawanda voted to eliminate the position of City Clerk and combine the offices of the City Clerk and City Treasurer to form one position of Clerk-Treasurer, making Rob the first-ever City official to hold that title.
Rob enlisted in N.Y. Army National Guard in October 2001 in direct response to the attacks on September 11th. He is a veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, where he served from March 2008 until December of the same year. His mission was to serve as a combat mentor/advisor to the Afghan National Police in Kandahar City, the second-largest city in Afghanistan. As the Executive Officer /Unit Movement Officer for an infantry company, he was responsible for ensuring that all the logistical needs of the company were met to facilitate operational readiness, coordinate and run all company meetings, and act as the commander in his absence. He successfully moved $10 million worth of equipment to Afghanistan and back to the United States.
He is the recipient of the Bronze Star, the Army Commendation Medal, the Afghan Campaign Medal, and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge in recognition of his service.
Prior to entering public service, Rob served as an independent personal financial analyst with Primerica Financial Services. There, he held multiple licenses, including the series 6 & 63 investment licenses, mortgage broker license, and NYS life insurance license. He specialized in assisting middle-income families to reduce their debt and save enough to be able to retire with dignity.
At the start of the 2019 Legislative session, Rob became the Ranking Member of the New York State Senate Committee on Agriculture and the Committee on Veterans, Homeland Security, and Military Affairs. One of the accomplishments he is most proud of was introducing and expanding the Joseph P. Dwyer Program across western New York. The program provides peer-to-peer support program for veterans facing the challenges of post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injuries, and reintegration into civilian life.
In June of 2020, Rob was elected the Minority Leader by his colleagues in the Republican Conference.
Rob lives in North Tonawanda with his wife, Meghan.
Orleans County Legislature
Chairwoman Lynne Johnson
I wish you all a very Happy New Year. I wanted to take a moment as we begin a new year to thank you all for your continued support, that I hope will bring our county much success. As you are likely aware, 2018 brings a new chapter for me personally as the newly elected Chair of the Orleans County Legislature. I am deeply honored to have been selected by my peers to serve as their leader and to be only the second woman to serve in this important post.
I remain steadfast in my commitment to making Orleans County the best run small county in New York State. The Orleans County Legislature has a big year planned for the county including a very ambitious capital program including a number of bridge and culvert projects, an expansion of our facilities at the county’s Route 31 campus, a brand new fulltime Tourism Director (with decades of industry experience), a new animal control program, the newly formed Land Bank (Niagara Orleans Regional Land Improvement Corporation) and feverish work in our expanded Planning Department working on plans for our Waterfront Redevelopment (LWRP) and evaluation of a countywide approach to the management and planning of our collective water systems.
2018 continues to have many concerns and challenges that we will be working on as well. There seems to be no relief in sight from the ever-present state mandates. The county continues to see the terrible impact of the opioid crisis as we begin to embark on a multi -county law suit against the pharmaceutical companies. Lake levels continue to remain much higher than normal and Plan 2014 remains the order of the day in terms of regulation of the lake level problem. And, last but not lease one of my personal favorites, the expansion of rural broadband.
Thank you again for your time and your support as we begin a very challenging and exciting new year. Be assured that our legislature will be working hard to make Orleans County the best it can be.
Lynne M Johnson
Orleans County Legislature
Merle L. “Skip” Draper
As we head into 2018, I wanted to take the time to thank everyone for all of their support. As you probably know, becoming a county legislator is a new experience for me. An experience that is much different than that of Town Supervisor (a position that I have held for the past 24 years). I am truly humbled and honored to serve as an Orleans County Legislator.
Our Chairman Lynne Johnson, has assigned me to serve as Chairman of the Health Committee (departments include Public Health, Mental Health & ARC) and to be a part of the Public Safety Committee which includes the departments of Probation, Sheriff, Stop DWI, Public Defender, District Attorney and the Courts.
The Orleans County Legislature has a big year planned for the our county which will focus on an ambitious capital program encompassing a number of bridge and culvert projects; an expansion of our facilities at the county’s Route 31 campus; a brand new full-time Tourism Director (with decades of industry experience); a new animal control program; the newly formed Land Bank (Niagara Orleans Regional Land Improvement Corporation). We will work on our expansion of the Planning Department including plans for our Waterfront Redevelopment (LWRP); as well as an evaluation of a countywide approach to the management and planning of our collective water systems. Our legislature will continue to work toward the expansion of rural broadband. As chairman of the Health Committee, we will be combating the opioid crisis throughout our county. The Legislators will proceed with the goal of regulation of our lake levels. An important task will include creating new economic development projects for all of Orleans County.
Orleans has a lot to be proud of but we also have a lot of work to do! Collectively we can all work to help Orleans County be the best it can be!
Merle L. “Skip” Draper
Orleans County Legislature
‘I am an American’, one of the greatest statements a person can make. To be part of this great political experiment, our Representative Republic, known as the United States of America, is a blessing from God. A nation controlled by ‘We the People’ and held up by the four corner stones: The Constitution, Rule of Law, Capitalism (free market) and the American Spirit (citizens). I am proud and grateful to be an American.
In a state were 95% of our property taxes pay for only nine State unfunded mandated programs (100% of cost at county level), Orleans County is ranked second, out of sixty-two counties, in fiscal responsibility. This is only achievable because of the county employees’ commitment to the citizens of our county, providing services at the lowest possible cost. Another key factor in controlling cost in the county is the cooperation between departments. To the department heads and employees thank you for all you do for our county. Without their commitment, our actions to share services with villages, towns and other counties, to lower cost, would not be successful.
Thank you for allowing me to be your public servant. It is an honor and a privilege to represent you.
God Bless America!
Donald J. Allport
Legislator At-Large (Central)
Chairman Public Safety Committee
Vice-Chairman Health Committee