Monday, October 3, 2016

Letter to the Editor from Wellsville Mayor Judy Lynch

Mayor Judy Lynch Wants to Build on Progress in the Village
            When I took office my intention was to correct many of the issues plaguing our Village Government that added to our tax woes and hampered our progress.  Change is hard in a small town and these specific improvements could not have happened without a dedicated staff and Board of Trustees.  I am very proud of these accomplishments since I have been Mayor and ask for your vote on November 8th to continue my efforts:
           The Burrous Building required a true team effort to obtain ownership in order to stabilize and make necessary repairs for the safety and health of our residents. Demolition of the building would be very expensive, and would require raising taxes 5%.  Recently I gave a presentation to the Western Regional Council in hopes of being awarded economic development funding for the Burrous Building project.  As a result the village was notified that the project has been given priority status with between one and two million dollars in funding being considered.   Senator Cathy Young and Empire State Development have expressed tremendous support of the project. 
           Infrastructure maintenance and improvement projects have been a focus since taking office.  The village has completed important upgrades to our electrical grid to better serve our regular and large business customers.    Paving projects have been completed and more planned to take advantage of new equipment capabilities.  Our new paving machine will allow us to do more road work and stretch taxpayers dollars.
           Privatizing disposal services has been a success and ultimately improved the service for residents while creating private sector jobs.  KS LaForge Disposal Services has done a great job with the transition.
           The Village recently established The Urban Renewal Agency, dedicated to managing property blight.  This agency is led by the Mayor and key to taking possession of vacant or dangerous buildings for either renewal or demolition. 
           With a newly reorganized Code Enforcement Department in the Village, plans are being made for action against blight properties.  A recent local law was adopted to regulate unsafe properties and give the village more power to force property owners to comply with the law.  Considering our tax rates we need to have a mechanism to protect responsible property owners.
         The Village has realized a balanced budget for my 4 years in office, kept tax increases below the state mandated ‘tax cap’ and continued to provide contingency funds for equipment and infrastructure.  Our financial health continues to improve and our capital reserve accounts continue to grow.  This new stability gives the Village the means to plan and budget for the future. 
         The Village hired a new police chief who brings a lifetime of experience and conservative fiscal management to our table.  Chief Tim O’Grady has the experience to get the job done and the will to find ways to reduce the high price of public safety.  A recent shift toward leasing police vehicles gives the village a tool for better budgeting and saves the taxpayer money by reducing maintenance expense. 
         The Village began honoring local veterans with regular flag raising ceremonies over the Municipal building.  Each flag is presented by a local veteran and starts a tradition of recognizing our military community.
         The Village economy is improving!  Our real estate market is robust and core pieces of our tax base like North Main Street are being revived.  New businesses like the Duke House have opened and the Wellsville Brewery is being built for a 2017 opening on Main Street. 
Wellsville NY has many challenges and the process of improvement can’t be stalled again.  I hope you will consider the progress we have made and support my re-election as Mayor of this fine village on November 8th.