Recycle this village

There is something prophetic about the mayor of Manlius, in charge of one of Upstate's most wealthy villages, driving around in a Mercedes in the wee hours pilfering bottles and cans from his constituent's bins in violation of his own village's by-laws. Oh yes it was for a noble cause - medication for his dog, long since passed away, but he's got the fever and just received his second ticket in as many months. Now he's being linked to pilfering at the fire station. Can anyone say obsessive-compulsion disorder?

But the village has a long history of employees caught with the proverbial "hand in the cookie jar." You've heard the one that made it to the front pages, but there were others that were swept under the rug and quietly let go. How many more were never discovered? Bad management? Dysfunctional? A joke? All of the above. I'm waiting for Leno and Letterman to show up after the election because this village has become a laughing stock.

Let's talk about the reality of the village of Manlius. As my 13-year-old daughter remarked a couple of years ago as she surveyed the empty and decrepit spaces along Route 92 in the village, "Gee Dad, Manlius is starting to look a lot like Syracuse!" No parking. No long term planning. No bypass to ease traffic congestion. Only one thoroughfare right through the middle of the village. Have you ever tried to exit Brueger's at rush hour? Meanwhile south and east of the village keep building. Three beautiful waterfalls that are only accessible via private property. Recently a couple of the strip malls were refurbished by new owners out of New York City. Yet they still have vacancies.

The board spent lots of money on its "Vision Manlius" study. It's no closer to reality than the day they commissioned it. A pipe dream. Talk to anyone in the know. And what's with the $2 million in the budget surplus fund? That money belongs to the tax payers!

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