Two stories in this week’s paper quote newly sworn-in town supervisors Mary Bean in Spafford and Mary
Sennett in Skaneateles.
As both these women took office, they showed great excitement, enthusiasm and dedication toward making positive changes in town government.
As the excitement of their victory in the November election wears off, a real test of their effectiveness will be results. Will things actually be different than under past leaders?
While the work done by town board members does directly effect the residents of the town, it is not a glamorous job, and results are rarely swift and easy to notice.
As these new supervisors look to implement changes in how the towns operates and how it interacts with residents, they will need to show patience and continue to work hard toward their goals.
The first Skaneateles town board meeting last Thursday included an announcement of seven goals the board will strive to accomplish in 2014.
While some of the goals have an endpoint, many are simply a change in culture and will be an ongoing effort. In other words, the work never ends and the results won’t be evident overnight.
After presenting the goals for the year, Sennett said that the board will have to revisit them at the beginning of 2015 to see what they accomplished and what they need to do moving forward. Having stated goals and periodically evaluating your progress toward those goals is a good way to gauge effectiveness.
On New Year’s Day, Bean said that a lot of work needs to be done in Spafford. The board’s first regular meeting on Jan. 9, could run three hours long, she said.
Again, this work will likely not result in big changes overnight, but rather gradual changes that are hard to measure.
For both boards, keeping their enthusiasm generated by the election in mind as they get into the grind of the job will be key in continuing to try and make a difference and, eventually, see the fruits of their labor.