Y the rush?

Lysander increases size of planning board

— Controversy did not end with the former Lysander town board.

At the Jan. 23 board meeting, a contentious public hearing was held regarding the new board’s desire to increase the planning board from five to seven members. After nearly an hour of comments from residents and the board, most of which were against the proposed law, a vote was held and the law was approved, 4-1.

“It’s one more thing we needed to do,” said Supervisor John Salisbury, who added he received a number of phone calls and emails from residents who were in favor of the law. “We have studied this issue over and over, and looked at other boards for reasonable numbers.”

Ultimately, Salisbury said the board is looking for a wider presentation of Lysander residents on the planning board.

“I don’t know why the decision had to be made so early in your reign,” Lysander resident Kevin Rode said about the decision. Another resident said he was shocked that the board didn’t look into it more.

Before voting, Councilor Art Levy, who was the sole vote against the law, said the board should consider tabling the motion and conduct further studies, as the existing planning board members had suggested during their Jan. 19 board meeting.

“I don’t understand the rush − ¬I don’t understand the need to do this in the first month,” Levy said. “I believe we need due diligence.”

Levy added that Cicero is considering reducing their board from seven to five members. “We need to find out why,” he said.

Prior to the vote, Lysander resident Jim Stirushnik said he would be in favor of increasing the members if Van Buren, Baldwinsville and Lysander all combined their respective planning boards into one. He added that the existing board met for 15 hours during the 12 meetings last year and more than half those hours were spent on the YMCA.

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