MOU on its way to a vote

Fayetteville Mayor Mark Olsen updated the Manlius Village Board Dec. 2 on the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the creation of the Fayetteville-Manlius Joint Fire District.

Trustee Marc Baum questioned if the board of fire commissioners should consist of appointed or elected officials because of their ability to impact taxes. Baum wasn't sure if a taxation without representation-like situation was potentially being created. Olsen said that sometimes elected officials aren't always the best at making service decisions and the people appointed to the board would be qualified at keeping the tax rate even.

Attorney Jeff Brown pointed out that the MOU outlines the intent of the joint fire district and the appointed board of fire commissioners would know to follow those guidelines, while elected officials could throw that intent right out the window.

The next step towards the creation of the Fayetteville-Manlius Joint Fire District is for the villages of Fayetteville and Manlius, along with the towns of Manlius and Pompey to approve the MOU. Then it will be the public's turn to weigh in on the issue, with two public hearings and then a referendum to ultimately accept or reject the joint fire district.

New monuments for Veterans Memorial Park

Local veterans and the parks committee decided that two new one-sided monuments will be placed in the Veterans Memorial Park in front of the village centre to honor soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. This will replace the original two-sided monument that the veterans wanted to add to the current park.

Trustee Mark-Paul Serafin said that American Legion would soon start fundraising to help offset the cost of the two new monuments, and he would be donating two caricature drawings of former Syracuse University basketball players Hakim Warrick and Gerry McNamara. Syracuse University basketball coach Jim Boeheim and his wife Juli are also involved, donating an autographed picture of the 2008 Olympic basketball team. This comes two weeks after the meeting where Mayor Rick Penhall told both sides to compromise to get the monument in place.

The holiday spirit is continuing in the village and at the Manlius Art Cinema, where the board is encouraging residents to take advantage of the two showings of "The Polar Express" on Saturday Dec. 13. The movie will be playing at 9:30 a.m. and at noon, and it is only a $1 donation or one food item for the local food bank to get in.

The board will next meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday Dec. 16 at the Manlius Village Centre.

Jennifer Kiefl is a contributing writer for the Eagle Newspapers.

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