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Meier praised by Medina Village Board for leadership as mayor

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 29 March 2016 at 12:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers – Medina Mayor Andrew Meier smiles during Monday’s Village Board meeting, his last meeting as mayor. Michael Sidari starts as new mayor on Friday.

MEDINA – Andrew Meier was praised for his efforts in leading the Village of Medina government the past 4 ½ years on Monday, his last meeting as Medina mayor before Michael Sidari takes over on Friday.

Meier, a local attorney and business owner, opted not to seek re-election last month. He was sometimes at odds with board members, particularly with a push to dissolve village government. Village residents rejected dissolution on Jan. 20, 2015 with a 949 to 527 vote, one of the biggest turnouts at village polls in recent memory.

“Our relationship was sometimes a bit rocky but I admire the way he has dedicated himself and worked for the village, and kept us on the straight and narrow,” said Owen Toale, a village trustee.

Meier, 36, has worked to renovate the R.H. Newell Company building on West Center Street, a building that is now home to a cafe, meadery, law offices, a boutique hotel and outdoor performance venue.

“Medina is a place that people want to visit and a lot of that is due to you,” Trustee Marguerite Sherman told Meier.

Sherman and Sidari were both elected as write-in trustees about two years ago. Both wanted to keep the village government intact. Meier saw village dissolution as a way to reduce taxes and streamline services.

“There’s always been respect,” Sherman said. “We haven’t agreed on everything but we worked together as a team. Your heart is with our community and maintaining the historic aspect of our village.”

Sidari and Trustee Todd Bensley also said Meier has been dedicated to the village, and welcomed other board members feedback.

“I always appreciate what Andrew’s done for the community,” Bensley said. “I never questioned that he wanted what was best for the village.”

Meier said he will stay involved in the community.

“We’ve accomplished a great deal,” Meier told the board members on Monday. “We don’t get down to pettiness.”

The village is experiencing a rebirth of its business district, while also targeting vacant houses and buildings. It tackled a solar energy project at the sewer plant, and is working with the Genesee County Economic Development Corporation to run sewer lines to the STAMP site in the Town of Alabama.

Medina also is home to the new Pride Pak vegetable processing plant under construction on Route 31.

Meier said the village is in good hands with Sidari, the Village Board and the village department heads.

He credited many of the recent improvements in Medina to dedicated residents, business owners and village employees – “to all of you we owe our success as a community,” he said.