To the Valley News:
We were glad when we were told that a study for dissolution was going to be done. We felt it was the right way of informing the village residents if dissolution was the way to go. Like many of the village residents we did feel dissolution would benefit the village home owners. Until the information started coming out how dissolution was not going to benefit the village residents in the way we felt it would or should. Over 66 percent of village residents would have an increase village taxes. Contrary to the article in March 6 paper this is not a small population. This does not include the fee for any special districts.
We decided to check with other villages who had dissolved or did a study and did not dissolve. Here is what we were told.
In larger areas, where there is huge population there was not much of change. They were a village in one town. Some special district had to be formed, but again because of the huge population in those areas the fee was not a real concern.
We then started looking into more rural areas. This was truly an education. One village that is in one town did a study and put it up for a vote. lt do not pass. When asked why? They said it was because the committee not only looked at what the consultant gave them, they chose to take it more in depth. They looked at what special districts may have to be formed, the number of people in the district and came up with an estimated cost. lt was very high. They looked at the water and sewer that was only in the village.
They felt that this would not make too much of a change. So why was dissolution voted down? In the end it was determined that the special districts would increase every village resident taxes. Voters felt that they were losing and not gaining. Most residence are happy with the village and liked their community.
In another area we asked the same questions. Dissolution did pass and the village was dissolved. We were told that when they voted to dissolve the village residents did not have all the facts. They went on the study only.
After dissolution came all the information on special districts, state mandates for both special districts, water and sewer etc. Village home owner now pay any where from 25 to 40 percent more in taxes than they did under the village. Some felt if they had to do it over they would get more information before dissolving. You need more than just the study itself.
When you vote for the plan it is only the village plan. The town plans come later and in our case this is where the changes happen. The towns only have to follow the village dissolution plan for a short period of time.
Since doing our homework we are not for dissolution of the village at this time. We feel we do not have all the facts. lt is a real concern for us that over half of the village home owners taxes will go up. This is not knowing what special districts would have to form, not to mention our water and sewer. Will we be in the situation as our neighboring towns with our water and sewer?
We have started a petition not to accept the village plan at this time. We hope village residence will sign the petition to not accept the current plan and allow more time to get the right information we need to make an intelligent decision.
We all know there are flaws in any type of government, from the federal to the local levels. We cannot and should not dissolve our village because the state wants it. New York State is in a mess, Towns are uncertain of their own funding and have there own issue's. The Village and towns together are stronger working together than separately.
Marjorie Zmijewski, Michal Zmijewski, Richard Clodgo, Sandra Clodgo