Preserve our villages by pushing for more state aid
Tom Rivers had a wonderful editorial in the Hub on Jan. 5 titled “Here’s a resolution that every elected official in Orleans should support.” It’s about the disproportionate amounts of state aid that villages and municipalities receive as compared to the amounts that cities receive, regardless of population.
As the Village of Medina’s decision on whether to dissolve looms, I can’t help but wonder why more village governments aren’t pushing for fair funding to turn themselves around rather than to just dissolve and hope that the state money which has been “promised” to encourage dissolution is renewed year to year. While the latter solution may save the average village taxpayer enough money each month to splurge on a large pizza and an order of wings (projected $40 a month savings for the average village household and at the expense on an increased tax rate for town residents), will it do much more than this?
The former solution would surely allow our villages across the state, with the right leadership, to thrive and even grow; it could permanently bring the money needed to draw in industry and technology, to fill our Main Street shops, to grow our tourism dollars, to preserve our historical sites, and to fund arts and cultural programs.
I hope that Medina’s residents show up to the polls in overwhelming numbers to vote on the 20th. I hope that whoever is in leadership of Medina in the weeks and years following the vote, whether a village mayor or town supervisor(s), can think bigger than just tax savings and truly work to enrich the village or former village.
Most of all I hope voters recognize all that is at stake for our village before they cast their vote and that they are aware of ALL of the possible ways, with willing leadership, that we can work for a revitalized and prosperous community.