(Ithaca, N.Y., April 21) - Tompkins County Administrator Jason Molino announced that he will be stepping down from his role at the end of May 2021. Molino informed the Legislature Tuesday evening that he has accepted a role as the Executive Director of the Livingston County, N.Y. Water and Sewer Authority.
“This has been an extremely difficult decision, but it is the right one for me and my family. This new position will afford me a better balance in my life and opportunities to be closer to our families.” Molino shared in a letter to staff.
Molino shared with staff a reflection on his time in Tompkins County, “These past three years have been incredibly rewarding. I have been continually amazed by the thoughtfulness, sincerity and empathy that the County staff show the public every single day. The staff’s professionalism and commitment to serve the community is what makes Tompkins County a very special place and has taught me as a leader the value of leading with compassion.”
Molino was hired as Tompkins County Administrator in January of 2018. In his tenure he has overseen the establishment of the County’s Office of Veteran’s Services and hiring its first Director, establishment of the County’s first Chief Equity and Diversity Officer, and the review and recommendation to merge the Mental Health and Public Health departments. Molino recently led the County’s Reimagining Public Safety Collaborative in partnership with the City of Ithaca. In March of 2020 Molino declared a state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and has led Tompkins County through the crisis. He also led the County through a challenging budget process in 2020 created by sales tax shortfalls due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Faced with drastic mid-year budgetary shortfalls, he imposed temporary furloughs for County staff, offered an early retirement incentive for County employees and ensured that any employee whose job would not be funded in the 2021 budget was offered another position within the County.
Chairwoman of the Tompkins County Legislature, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne thanked Molino for his service, sharing “Jason has served this County with integrity every single day in this role. He has brought a thoughtful presence as our administrator, showing deep support for our staff and fiduciary tact putting together budgets under ever-more-complicated circumstances.” McBean-Clairborne continued, “The Legislature wishes Jason our best as he embarks on the next chapter in his career, Livingston County will be lucky to have him.”
McBean-Clairborne and the Legislature extended thanks to Molino for his vision and strategies that have positioned Tompkins County as a leader in New York State. McBean-Clairborne added, “Tompkins County has had a track record of excellence under Jason’s leadership. We’re often first in the State and a community that others look to and admire.” She continued, “Jason has shown compassion for our community, especially visible in the fast forwarding of our movement towards safety and equity for all residents, with a keen focus on those most marginalized.”
The Legislature will name an Interim Administrator to follow Molino’s departure in the coming days. A comprehensive search for the next County Administrator will begin later in 2021. Molino plans to work closely with the Legislature and County leadership over the next few weeks to ensure a smooth transition for the organization following his departure.