AUBURN — Sheriff-elect Eric Samson is scheduled to be sworn in twice as Androscoggin County’s new top cop, once to make sure an authority is in place on Jan. 1 and again a week later as part of a public event aimed at heralding the biggest influx of new faces in county history.
Samson and his chief deputy appointee, William Gagne, will be sworn in on Dec. 31, County Clerk Patricia Fournier said.
“It will be just in case something happens,” Fournier said. It will legally secure a smooth change of command as current Sheriff Guy Desjardins’ term ends at midnight on the 31st.
If a large emergency happens after midnight, someone will be in charge of the sheriff’s department, she said.
The legal swearing-in will be followed by a more ceremonial event on Jan. 8, to be held just prior to the 5 p.m. meeting of the County Commission.
For the first time, five commissioners will take the oath.
The County Charter passed by voters in 2012 expanded the commission from three to seven members. Five of those seats were up for election this past November.
Incumbent Commissioner Elaine Makas, a Democrat from Lewiston, won re-election. She will be joined by four newcomers: Democrat Alfreda Fournier of Auburn and Republicans Ronald Chicoine and Matthew Roy of Lewiston and Sally Christner of Turner.
Other newly elected leaders, including District Attorney-elect Andrew Robinson and Register-elect of Probate Brian Bolduc, may also attend the swearing-in ceremony to be held at the Androscoggin County Building.