Democratic challenger Doug Chandler, who will run on the Conservative line when voters hit the polls March 18, is seeking support for his bid as mayor of Canastota.
Mayor Todd Rouse (R, I) asks voters to re-elect him as leader of the village.
Both candidates sat down with Eagle Newspapers staff and offered their views on important issues as well as their leadership philosophy.
Why did you choose to run for mayor?
There are things in the village that need to be done and issues that need to be addressed and I don't think the issues are being brought forth enough. The board is not as open as it could be.
What do you believe to be the most pressing issue(s) facing your constituents?
The biggest issue would be the waste water treatment plant. First of all [upgrades] have to be done. The federal [Environmental Protection Agency] and the state [Department of Conservation] lay guidelines out. You can't vary from them. It's how you go about coming up with the plans. You tell the engineering firm how and then you get DEC approval. We've had umpteenth years to get the plans drawn up and get approval. It's been a long drawn out scenario and every year it costs more. It should have been done before [Mayor] Todd [Rouse] was in office.
The problem is the [combined sewer] overflow. You can upgrade the plant to make it the best around but it doesn't address the CSO problem. The overflow issue should have been addressed in the last 10 years better than it has.
The other issue is roads. If you got to do one street a year, then let's budget for it.
I've got to address sidewalks and the streets. The trees have caused heaved and cracked sidewalks. We need to look a replacing them with slower growing trees. It looks nice but not when it becomes a safety issue. How do we fund that? We need to be a little more aggressive when talking to the state Department of Transportation.