Murray resident says current town officials run lean, cost-effective operation

Posted 5 November 2017 at 4:16 pm


I do not that like politics. I do not like campaigning. However, I feel so strongly about the election for Supervisor in the Town of Murray, that I have been doing exactly that – campaigning for Bob Miller.

Bob Miller has spent his career serving the public and now that he has retired, he would like to continue to do so. He is honest and hard working. If he doesn’t know an answer, he will find it out. Since the day he became a Town Board member, he has been at the Town Hall asking questions, doing research. He does not hesitate to challenge ideas he does not agree with. He is honest and abides by the law. That is the kind of person that I would like to represent our Town.

This is a race for Supervisor. It is not a race against the Code Enforcement Officer. Despite what some have been told, the Supervisor does not have the final say, but is the deciding vote in the case of a tie.

The Supervisor cannot get rid of the Code Enforcement Officer for doing “too much” of his job. Ron Vendetti is simply enforcing the codes per NYS regulations. It is not selective enforcing. I have gotten a violation for an unlicensed car in my driveway; my daughter has gotten a violation for not bringing in garbage cans. Did I like it?  No, but it is the law. For every person that does not like these laws, there is a neighbor who appreciates them.

In regard to the criticisms about our water districts, the operating and maintenance charge for each district is based upon how many units in the district, as well as how many feet the water district is. That is why some districts pay more than others. If you have a larger district in feet (more to maintain), but have fewer properties paying on it (less units to pay that cost), it will be more expensive. It is not illegal to charge it this way and I believe it is the fairest way.

To have residents pay, based solely upon how much water they use, is not fair. Water districts benefit everyone and add value to your property, whether you are connected or not. It makes sense that everyone should pay to maintain them. After all the criticism about the water department, at a public hearing on the budgets for the water districts this past week, only two residents attended, including Mr. Sidonio. He had no questions and no comments. The entire Board, Water Superintendent, and our accountants were there. He only asks questions about water when there is no one present who can rebut his statements with the facts.

As for the Comptroller’s Audit Report, it is hardly “scathing.” Look for yourself at the entire report online, at the key findings and key recommendations. The Town did not keep a separate bank account for capital projects.  However, there are no funds unaccounted for and our accounting system kept track of all expenditures.  Recommendations to improve procedures have been followed.

The Town Board is not blindly taxing and spending! Last year, the Town Board invited a Citizen’s Budget Group, including supporters of Mr. Sidonio, to sit in on budget planning last year. Nothing to hide. They stated that our budget is lean and did not know where cuts could be made. Our tax rate went down last year and is staying the same next year. There is no spending to be “reined in.” It is easy to say you will cut spending, but I haven’t heard where, specifically, Mr. Sidonio will make cuts? What services will we lose?

Bottom line is that our Board has done a great job. I see firsthand how hard they work to keep taxes reasonable and how much time and thought goes into putting together our budget. There is no extravagance here. They are all taxpayers too, working hard for everyone.

Mr. Sidonio wants you to believe that the Murray Town Board and Supervisor are overtaxing you, and therefore, themselves. He throws around words like corruption, unethical, illegal to try to get reactions from people. He says we are the “elite.” Elite? We are farmers, teachers, police officers, laborers, clerks and taxpayers.

I do not believe in tearing other people down unfairly, simply to advance oneself, under the guise of “working for you.” Is this the kind of person we want representing our town? I do not and I am confident the residents in the Town of Murray will see through these tactics.

I respectfully ask that you vote for Bob Miller on Tuesday, November 7, along with Mike Mele and Paul Hendel.


Louise Passarell