New trustee seeks to be 'common voice'
By Willie Kiernan
The village of Cazenovia has a new trustee. Barbara Bennett has taken over the position vacated by Troy Waffner. She was appointed by Mayor Tom Dougherty at the monthly meeting last Monday March 5 to fill Waffner's place until elections June 19. Bennett is as yet undecided about running for the election.
"I have the opportunity to test the waters," she said. "I'm a quick learner and I have a few more meetings to get up to speed."
A resident of Cazenovia just about all her life, Bennett was born on Mill Street. She was a school nurse for 23 years and retired in 1996. She was a member of the Madison County Democratic Committee for 35 years. She is the oldest of eight children and she has six of her own. She is a member of the Cazenovia Golf Club and is active in St. James Church. She is also very active in the American Legion.
"She has been a person who has worked her whole life in Cazenovia behind the scenes," Dougherty said.
Bennett's husband Floyd, who has passed away, was the zoning officer for the village and town and was also on the school board for 12 years. Dougherty recalled how Floyd used to tout the system, how a trustee would come in and learn one department, like water and sewer. Then they would rotate to parks and recreation, then to police and fire, then to sidewalk and roads. In this way, trustees learned all the different facets of local government.
"I come from a family who grew up here," Bennett said. "My grandfather was the water commissioner many years ago. My father was a barber and there were a lot of politics that went on in the barbershop.