Van Buren sends voters to the polls, Lysander postpones referendum vote

Lysander alone in seeking change to town clerk position

— “I don’t know why we have to change anything,” said Councilor Harold Johnson, who voted against the motion.

Now the choice will go to Van Buren voters in the form of a referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot. Should Van Buren residents approve the change from elective to appointive, candidates for the position of highway superintendent would have to meet civil service requirements and the appointment would be for a four-year term; the town board would also deal with any dismissal.

Lysander held two public hearings on Monday, Aug. 13. The first hearing was held to listen to comments about changing the highway superintendent from elective to appointive and the second hearing was to listen to comments about changing the town clerk’s position from elective to appointive.

Many Lysander residents voiced concern about the lack of information provided regarding the proposed changes.

“I don’t understand why these positions would be better appointed rather than elected,” said resident Bob Tassone.

“We are [lacking] some concrete figures,” said Bill Tibbins. “I’m in the dark; I have no idea how much we’re going to save.”

“I think [the voters] should have all the information, and we have not had it,” said Hugh Kimball.

Lysander officials had little information to offer residents as these changes are the first steps that need to be taken in order to begin discussions about sharing services and cutting costs.

“We feel appointing [these positions] allows us to make better decisions on these inter-municipal agreements,” said Lysander Supervisor John Salisbury.

Discussions about inter-municipal agreements and consolidation were held during all three hearings. Baldwinsville Mayor Joseph Saraceni, who attended both hearings, said, “We have the opportunity to look outside the box. There is opportunity to cooperate among our highway departments. It’s about running an efficient government.”

Both Van Buren and Lysander officials said consolidation was a long way off, and that the three municipalities were looking at cost-saving measures through possible use of inter-municipal measures.

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