Moriah Supervisor Tom Scozzafava
It doesn’t matter what you have done in the past, Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants more when it comes to municipalities working together.
The Town of Moriah is working with the Moriah Central School District to appease the state’s chief administrator.
“There are things that we have done over the past couple of years and there is more we can do that can be a savings to the school and to the town, which means a savings for the taxpayers,” Supervisor Tom Scozzafava said. “If we can work together, then we can see the state rebate. The town, village and school all came in under the cap this year and next year we have to show a savings through shared services which we can do.”
“We do share equipment with each other which prevents us from going out and having to buy the same piece of equipment the other may already have,” Superintendent Bill Larrow said. “I don’t think there is a time when we are doing something that we do not think of each other.”
Scozzafava and Larrow both said while they hope to meet Cuomo’s plan for a proposed tax rebate in the next tax cycle, they still do not know all of the details.
“We do not have enough information right now,” Scozzafava said. “The question we have is how much is that rebate going to be. We want to have everything in place, though.”
“I looked for any specific information after the last time I met with Tom and I couldn’t find any,” Larrow added.
Currently, the two entities share several services. The town provides police staffing at all Moriah varsity football games played at Linney Field for a flat rate of $50 per game.
“They used to pay an hourly salary for police at the games,” Scozzafava said. “Steve (Stahl, Police Chief) builds the schedule around the football games so there is coverage. It saves the school from paying extra money for security.”
The town and school have also combined on a playground grant through the Creating Healthy Places program, with the town purchasing equipment through the grant and the school providing the property.
“The school owns the property in Grover Hills while the town has the basketball courts,” Scozzafava said. “This is a joint effort to put this park in.”
The town also helps the school with snow plowing and salting services.
“We were both buying salt and since the school was buying less, they were paying a higher price,” Scozzafava said. “Now, we have that together for a bulk price.”
The school is also purchasing new water meters which the town will install along with sharing any surplus equipment.
“The current driver’s education car is our old police car,” Scozzafava said. “It’s little things as well that can save both of us money.”
Larrow said the two also do a lot to support each other with the local youth commission.
“We host a lot of the town youth programs and maintain the fields,” Larrow said. “We talk about quite a few things and how we can help each other.”
Scozzafava said he feels there is a more open line of communication between the two entities.
“The school and the town has never had the relationship that we have now,” he said. “With Bill, it has been more than just a school. It has been a community center and the building is being used by all of the taxpayers.”