Over the past few weeks I have been involved with budget issues on almost daily basis. While I’ve faced a number of challenges over the course of the first year of my term, the most difficult, to date, is the formulation of the annual village budget. This is a daunting task. However, the village staff, most notably Village Clerk, Julie Kain and the Village Board have been working diligently over the past few months on this year’s budget. The process actually began this past November and the Board has been working on various aspects of the budget since that time. A number of financial factors, of which the board has little or no control over, makes it an extremely difficult task to hold the line on taxes. While keeping in mind future capital needs, the Board, as a whole, is committed to reviewing every aspect of the budget in great detail.
The New York State Senate passed legislation, sponsored by Senator George Maziarz to create a new, permanent program called “Recharge NY,” that would provide low-cost power to help businesses create and retain jobs.
“This bill is another step toward spurring economic growth. The key to revitalizing our economy is to create jobs. This is a business-friendly measure that will have a positive effect on all of our stakeholders. I applaud Senator Maziarz and the Governor for their leadership on it,” said Senator Jack M. Martins, who supported the bill.
Six months ago we heard that the New York State Budget Department was quietly trying to re-write the State Aid formula for certain special education expenses in order to shift certain costs from the State budget to local districts. This was apparently being done without the knowledge of State legislators.
When Governor Cuomo announced his budget proposal, including proposed State Aid to school districts, he did not mention any proposed changes in the funding of certain special education programs. Accordingly, Newsday and every other paper in New York only ran charts showing proposed cuts in State Aid. That was over a month ago.
It is important to remind all of our residents that the Williston Park Village elections are once again upon us, and, as American citizens, we have the privilege of voting for the candidate of our choice.
Last year Mayor Paul Ehrbar appointed Barbara Alagna to fill the trustee seat vacated when trustee Swenson-Dowd was appointed Associate Justice.
I will keep this short and sweet. Dedicated, experienced and committed candidates are the cornerstone of local government. Barbara Alanga has it all.
A vote for Barbara as a trustee in Williston Park is a vote for the future of the Village of Williston Park.
This past weekend Deputy Mayor Terry Thomann, Trustees Barbara Alagna, and Kevin Rynne, Village Clerk Julie Kain and myself attended the Annual NYCOM Legislative Conference in Albany.
While we were only there two days, a great deal of information was obtained. We met with our local legislators, which allowed us an opportunity to discuss concerns and needs of the village with them. A number of seminars were held during the conference which provided valuable information pertinent to issues confronting our village. we all felt the trip was extremely beneficial to helping with village affairs.
Bert Lance, President Carter’s Director of the Office of Management and Budget, liked to say “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. With New York State government there is no choice. It is broken and it needs to be fixed.
There are clearly many different ideas about how it should be fixed. Many are worthy of serious consideration, including ones which may have been viewed as too radical at other times. Hopefully, the discussion will be thorough, open and rational and, hopefully, it will focus on real solutions rather than ideological promises.
No one can guarantee that any solution will solve all problems for the foreseeable future but any plan worthy of serious consideration should actually fix something.
This letter is an endorsement of Barbara Alagna for Trustee of the Village of Williston Park. My husband Jim and I have known Barbara for more than 10 years. She served as secretary to the Board of Trustees of the Village when I was Deputy Mayor. Barbara was reliable, well organized and competent at her job. Through this position she learned about village government and the procedures needed to run the Village effectively.
Alan J. Reardon
Former Judge of Village of Williston Park
In this past week’s newspaper, a resident asked two questions in the form of comments regarding village performance/decisions. The questions are reasonable and a response seems appropriate as others in the community may have the same questions. Open dialogue is good, as it promotes worthwhile discussion.
The first question asked, questioned the village plow techniques during the recent snowstorms. The concern raised, indicated that it appears that the work crews have changed philosophy and no longer plow curb to curb but rather plows three feet away from each curb. While it appears that this may be the case, in actuality the plow trucks attempt to place the plow blade as close as possible to the curb, depending on weather conditions. The first storm, whose remnants remain, was a challenge to our experienced staff.
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