Oct 14, 2009 Tami S. Zimmerman Uncategorized
Larissa Brenner is one of six candidates running for a councilor seat on the Manlius Town Board. There are three openings.
Currently Stay-at-Home Mom; earned masters of public administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University; formerly employed as legislative aide for NYS Assemblyman Bill Magnarelli focusing on economic development, education, health and Veterans issues; also previously worked as a research assistant on campaign finance reform at the Brookings Institution
This is the first time I have run for political office. I have served as the elected treasurer for the Onondaga County Young Democrats. I have volunteered for numerous local, county and state campaigns.
Member of the Onondaga County Democratic Committee; Volunteered with a Sustainability Committee for Onondaga County; Member of the Maxwell Central New York Alumni Association; RSVP Mom for Mommy & Me of Central New York; Member of the East Side Moms
Why are you running for a seat on the Manlius Town Board?
My education from the Maxwell School and my experience working as a legislative aide have given me the knowledge necessary to evaluate proposals before the town board and to make decisions that will benefit our entire community.
We must bring our town property taxes to an affordable level, and we can do so while still providing the high quality services that we expect of the town. We can achieve this goal by looking to share services/equipment to reduce operating costs, by creating a business-friendly environment so that we fill up our empty commercial space, by adopting a sustainable development plan, and by more aggressively pursuing federal and state grants for upcoming infrastructure projects. With these measures, we should be better able to keep property taxes under control while maintaining our quality of life.
Name at least two key issues happening within the town that concern you and please describe what you would like to do to address them, if elected.
During this campaign, I have knocked on thousands of doors, and in every corner of this town, there is one issue that affects almost everyone — drainage. Part of the problem is rooted in the natural makeup of our land, but it is also rooted in poor development decisions made in years past, both in Manlius and in neighboring towns.
I would support a multi-year comprehensive plan to address flooding/drainage problems, and we should aggressively pursue federal and state aid to assist us with this plan. We simply cannot continue to allow the serious drainage problems that exist in Manlius because it is an unsustainable way to manage our community.
Secondly, I am concerned that our fiscal situation is placing pressure on our already tight budget. Our town employees work hard to keep government running smoothly and efficiently, and they could offer valuable insights on how to make town operations even more cost effective.
As a town councilor, I would take a fresh look at all of our town expenditures and work to further streamline operations so that we increase efficiency, and thereby reduce costs, in town government. Increasing the tax burden during these difficult economic times should not be an option for addressing any revenue shortfall.
Name at least two key issues happening within the town that you believe affect town residents — positive or negative. What changes would you make, if any?
Residents throughout the town have told me that they would like the town board to adopt a sensible, comprehensive and sustainable long-term development plan. It seems that too many decisions are made on a case-by-case basis without an eye on how we want our community to look 10 or 20 years in the future. Too often, good ideas are dismissed before the community is even given a chance to weigh in. We must do a better job of supporting our existing business centers, while also maintaining the green areas that keep Manlius a beautiful place to live.
Secondly, I would like to see the town develop a comprehensive transportation plan — with sufficient opportunities for public comment and input before decisions are made. This plan would include pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly pathways, either in wooded areas or near roads, as well as improve connections between the villages by public transportation.
Why should Manlius residents vote for you?
If I am elected, I pledge to work to improve the lives of the residents of this town, and never for personal benefit or for special interests. I will hold office hours and will meet with any resident who wishes to discuss a town issue with me. My professional experience and education will help me to enact policies that will be effective in achieving our common goal of keeping Manlius a beautiful and affordable place to live long into the future.