New York Town Left Without Government

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With eight months on the job, small town Supervisor Thomas Dias is faced not with a crisis in government, but no government all.

In the past week, three veteran Ancram town board members abruptly resigned. That leaves the rural Columbia County town of 1,500 with a government unable to even pay bills dating back to July.

Dias is trying to get Gov. David Paterson to appoint at least one town councilman so the five-member board has a quorum and can conduct business.

Dias tells The Associated Press Tuesday that because the situation is considered so unlikely, state officials say there's no easy, defined way to fix it under law.

Some members cited personal reasons when they quit, but Dias admits he's tried to spice up town government by encouraging contentious debates.