Local, regional, state officials report: state of the area is very good

Cazenovia area officials gathered at the American Legion last week to participate in the State of the Area meeting.

Cazenovia area officials gathered at the American Legion last week to participate in the State of the Area meeting.

— The year 2012 was a good one during which many positive accomplishments were made by the Cazenovia village and town governments and school district, and the outlook for 2013, despite the typical issues and challenges faced every year, is just as optimistic.

This was the message conveyed to about 75 local residents during the annual State of the Area meeting last week, held at the Cazenovia American Legion Post 88 and sponsored by the Greater Cazenovia Area Chamber of Commerce.

The meeting offered local residents a chance to hear updates from, as well as ask questions to, their local officials. Attending the meeting were Cazenovia Mayor Kurt Wheeler, Cazenovia Town Supervisor Ralph Monforte, Cazenovia Central School District Superintendent Bob Dubik, Nelson Town Supervisor Roger Bradstreet and New York State Assemblyman for the 121st District Bill Magee. Invited but not present were Fenner Town Supervisor Russell Cary, Eaton Town Supervisor Priscilla Suits and New York State Senator for the 53rd District David Valesky.

The moderator for the evening was chamber of commerce Chair Gene Gisson, and comments on the state of the chamber and commerce in Cazenovia were made by chamber member Art Bigsby.

“We had a wonderful year in 2012,” Bigsby said during the first remarks of the evening. He said the chamber now has 350 members, drew about 25,000 people into the village for local events last year and a recent survey of chamber members showed a majority of respondents felt business was better in 2012 than 2011.

Bigsby said there is a need for more affordable housing for people of all ages in the community, the improvement of which would help the local economy and business community.

Dubik also cited a lack of affordable housing as one of the main challenges facing the Cazenovia school district, saying the district has lost 300 students in the last nine years.

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