October 20, 2013

Keeseville residents torn over dissolution

KEESEVILLE — With the vote on the dissolution plan for their village fast approaching, Keeseville residents are considering both the past and the future.

For Christa Zoeller, co-owner of Kingsland Square Bistro and Bakery on Front Street, the idea is a melancholy one.

“If you dissolve a village after it’s been here so many years, you’re really just saying you don’t care.”

Thus, Zoeller hopes that the dissolution plan will be voted down Tuesday. She said she doesn’t get into politics, but “I just want community support to work.”


Zoeller and business partner Jim Hewitt opened the Bistro and Bakery in May; she and her husband, Robert, have lived in Keeseville for six years.

Mr. Zoeller also hopes the village will not be dissolved. 

“We’ve noticed new stuff coming in,” he said, expressing the hope that the village would grow. 

Business at the bistro was good during the summer, and the Zoellers are hoping that their change to gluten-free food will boost business during the potentially quieter fall and winter months.

Mr. Zoeller added another concern about dissolution, saying that he believes taxes, as well as water and sewer costs, would go up as a result.

“That’s my understanding.”


But Leon “Butch” Clodgo, Keeseville resident and member of the Keeseville Village Joint Dissolution Study Committee, sees things differently.

“The village is always struggling to stay afloat financially. They’re just barely squeaking by all the time.”

He believes taxes would go down, and feels the savings in salaries would be important — for example, eliminating the salaries of the mayor and Board of Trustees of Keeseville.

Dissolution would be a good idea, he said, because it eliminates “a layer of government.”

Clodgo said the people of Keeseville have a choice.

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