LAKE GEORGE - The Warren County Supervisor with the longest tenure in recent history has decided he's ready to step down.
Lake George Supervisor Louis Tessier, who's been elected 14 times to public office in Lake George, has decided not to run again in November for another term.
Tessier revealed his intentions this week.
"I'll be 81 years old in July, and after 26 years in office, it's time for a younger person to take over," he said. "I want to do some other things in my life."
Tessier was elected to the Lake George Town Board in 1981, and he was elected Town Supervisor in 1983. Since his entry into politics, he's won 14 consecutive elections.
Tessier served as Chairman of the Warren County Board of Supervisors from 1996 to 2000, after a five-year stint as county budget officer.
Tessier identified his major accomplishment during his tenure as lining up support to build the Scoville Learning Center at Adirondack Community College, against nearly overwhelming political opposition.
Supervisors were concerned about long-term debt, but he engineered an agreement between Warren and Washington counties to pay cash for the building, which became a centerpiece of the ACC campus, and a center of student activity. At that time, the county had an unexpended reserve funds of $16.5 million, many times the level now. It was built in 1997.
Tessier also was a strong advocate for tourism as well as fiscal responsibility. At the town level, he successfully worked to consolidate town and village services to save taxpayer money. Also, he worked to modernize the Diamond Point water system.
Recently, he's been a staunch advocate of refurbishing the Gaslight Village buildings, against formidable opposition, for use as festival and event headquarters.
He has said the buildings would attract events and festivals, boosting tourism in the area.
Recently, he's been grooming his ally town councilman Frank McCoy as a viable candidate as town Supervisor.
McCoy isn't likely to run unchallenged.
Others are seeking the post, apparently. Names mentioned around town, or those interviewed by the town Republican Committee for candidacy, include village entrepreneur John Carr, Jamie Green, former councilman George McGowan, Tom McKinney, and Fran Heinrich.
Tessier was known to respond to the needs of his constituents, particularly the elderly, Warren County Administrator Hal Payne said Tuesday.
"He's been a strong advocate for his constituents," Payne said. "Whether it's from his town or across the county, he's made decisions with their benefit in mind," Payne said noting that Tessier focused on health care and tourism.
Tessier was diagnosed with prostate cancer last summer, and he underwent radiation treatments, which he completed eight months ago. He said Sunday that health considerations weren't what prompted him to retire from his post.
"I'm ready to spend time with my grandchildren," he said.