Mar 09, 2011 Erin Wisneski Uncategorized
It has been four years since any political seat in the village of Baldwinsville has been contested – this year there are four candidates vying for three trustee seats and two candidates vying for one justice seat.
Incumbents Mark Wilder and Dick Clarke, as well as former village Trustee Rick Presley, who retired from the position in 2009, are on the ballot, in addition to new comer Mike Shepard. Trustee Carrie Weaver will not seek a third term.
Village Justice Elijah Huling Jr. is being contested by justice candidate John Murphy, Jr.
The mayor’s seat is also on the ballot, but incumbent Joseph Saraceni is not being contested.
This year, candidates for trustees’ seats and the mayor’s seat will run for three-year terms, while village justice candidates will run for four years.
The election will be held Tuesday March 15 and polls will be open from noon to 9 p.m. at Village Hall, 16 West Genesee St. in Baldwinsville.
The Messenger recently caught up with trustee candidate Dick Clarke to get some insight into his views for the future of Baldwinsville. His responses are featured below:
Village Trustee Candidate
Residency: 53 years
It has been four years since a village trustee seat has been contested. In your opinion, why has their been a lull in political involvement and what has prompted the call to action?
Generally, people are so busy, they don’t take time to get involved, especially if there are no burning issues. This is an exciting time of growth and change in Baldwinsville and I think people are excited to be a part of it. I don’t think any driving issue created this race, just an open seat that piqued some interest.
Decreased revenues, reduction/elimination of sales tax money, an already over-burdened taxpayer base – How do you propose getting village spending in line with revenues?
By using due-diligence to maintain the balance between services and spending. I think the services – DPW, police, court, clerks – which village residents receive are the best in the area but we have to weigh that vs. cost. Streamlining wherever possible is crucial as well as consolidation of services with neighboring municipalities.
What issues are facing Baldwinsville? How do you propose handling these issues?
The obvious ones – taxes, lack of business growth, general voter apathy. We need to continue to provide services while maintaining a fiscal bottom line. Quality of life issues – parks, Paper Mill Island, the trails, strong DPW and police forces – will hopefully inspire new businesses to locate downtown and the development of Lock Street should inspire growth even more. Apathy is tough to deal with, but I try to make myself visible and accessible so I at least know the feelings of residents.
Why should voters re-elect you for village trustee?
My heart has always been with Baldwinsville. I love the village and what it stands for as a great place to live, grow up and raise kids. I think people who know me know I will fight to keep the village moving in a positive direction. I feel safe in saying that I work hard, have a positive outlook, am enthusiastic and have a strong character to do what is right. If I don’t immediately have an answer to a question posed by a resident, I will work hard to find one quickly.