Decision to resign is up to Arquiett, says legislature chair

Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 5:06 PM EST
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CANTON, New York (WWNY) - Through his lawyer, Tony Arquiett says he will continue to serve as a St. Lawrence County legislator even as others call for his resignation.

Arquiett faces drunk driving and cocaine possession charges following a crash on Saturday.

North country Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, a Republican, says Arquiett, a Democrat, should resign immediately.

“This is the third North Country elected Democrat to be arrested for criminal cocaine possession in recent years. I am calling on Tony Arquiett to resign immediately,” she said in a statement. “The silence of all North Country Democrats is deafening, and I urge Democrats to demand Arquiett’s resignation now and make clear that drugs have no place in our community, especially among our elected leaders.”

St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators Chairman Bill Sheridan, a Republican, said the decision to resign is something that Arquiett will have to make for himself. Sheridan says the board doesn’t have a lot of say in what happens unless Arquiett is convicted.

“We’re limited on options on how we can handle this situation. We could request his resignation or anyone can refer the matter to the ethics board,” said Sheridan.

Unless action is taken, Arquiett said he plans to stay on as a legislator while the case is pending. He’s scheduled to appear in town of Bombay court on the matter in January.

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