Press-Republican

In My Opinion

October 17, 2013

In My Opinion: Village shouldn't be dissolved

The Village of Keeseville is at the crossroads.

The most important matter that Keeseville residents now face is the Oct. 22 vote on whether to dissolve or keep our historic village intact.

I ran for mayor to save and improve Keeseville — not to abet its destruction but help guide it to a better, brighter future.

The Board of Trustees and I, as Mayor, are unanimously opposed to dissolving our village. The village is more than one individual; it is an entire “community.” Our community’s needs are most important to us.

With the vote soon coming up on the plan to dissolve, village residents need to know the straight true facts, not the “maybes.”

We feel that the plan is flawed for many reasons, some of which are because it does not use the costs that the towns will bear. The plan only uses the amounts that the village incurs.

A serious flaw is in salaries alone. Are the towns paying their employees at the same rate as the village? Are the costs of maintaining the village services going to be the same or more than the village government spends now? Will the response time to village problems or needs be the same? The answer to just these few questions is no.

We, as a village, now maintain direct control of all village needs and services. We control the water and sewer rates. We pledge to maintain a steady tax rate. We have control over village property and equipment bought with village money.

The officials that you elect live in your own community and work to preserve village funds, which will stay in the village instead of getting spread throughout the towns.

These officials can provide residents with help quickly and directly. If there is a village-specific problem, having the village government in place allows it to be addressed now as top priority, not later, behind other town priorities.

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