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Local residents hear election candidates, learn about ballot proposals

More than 50 people attend League of Women voters “Meet the Candidates” night

From right, League of Women Voters Chairperson Anne Redfern leads the current Cazenovia Supervisor Ralph Monforte, Clerk Linda Mather and Councilor Liz Moran in a panel discussion on the two ballot proposals for town residents seeking approval to extend the supervisor position to a four-year term from its current two-year term, and to change the town clerk from an elected to an appointed position.

From right, League of Women Voters Chairperson Anne Redfern leads the current Cazenovia Supervisor Ralph Monforte, Clerk Linda Mather and Councilor Liz Moran in a panel discussion on the two ballot proposals for town residents seeking approval to extend the supervisor position to a four-year term from its current two-year term, and to change the town clerk from an elected to an appointed position. Photo by Jason Emerson.

— Current Cazenovia Supervisor Ralph Monforte, Clerk Linda Mather and Councilor Liz Moran then held a panel discussion on the two ballot proposals for town residents seeking approval to extend the supervisor position to a four-year term from its current two-year term, and to change the town clerk from an elected to an appointed position.

On the supervisor proposal, Monforte said a four-year term allows the supervisor better opportunity to bring more services to the town from his or her position on the county board of supervisors.

“It is somewhat political, and the head of the board typically prefers to appoint someone [to committees] who will be there for four years rather than two years,” Monforte said. “I think I could have helped the town more, and quicker, if the head of the board knew I’d be there for four years, rather than having to wait for my reelection.”

Moran, who is a former town supervisor, said there is a “learning curve” to the job of supervisor and it is hard to feel one has mastered the job after only two years. Responding to a question from the audience, Moran said she feels it will also be easier for political parties to recruit candidates to run for the position if it is a four-year term because it is “less onerous” than having to run for reelection every two years.

On the town clerk proposal, Mather, who is retiring this year after holding the position for the past 25 years, said making the job an appointed position will better ensure the clerk is someone who is qualified for the job — rather than political parties leaders selecting a political candidate — and it also makes it easier for the town board to take action if the clerk needs to be penalized or terminated for some reason.

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